Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The Day After (The LibLime Visit)

Well, it was a pretty intense two days, but we think we managed to cover all modules and the specifics of our needed functionality with the LibLime folks.

The good news -- much of what we were requesting was already in the works, based on other consortial-sponsored development work. We won't know for sure what we would still need to sponsor until we get the full list from LibLime. They will be asking us to prioritize our development needs and once they have that information, they will be able to spec it out for us and attach dollars to it.

They were also very impressed with our test server installation and the level of configuration work we were already able to figure out on our own. As Brendan tells me, it's amazing what you can figure out when you spend your nights in your basement, pounding away on a server.

I will post more about those areas that still need development once we have the document from LibLime.


Thursday, August 7, 2008

LibLime Scope of Work Study

On July 31st, the Bibliomation Board approved our going forward with a scope of work study with LibLime, the main support vendor for Koha.

This scope of work study will identify those areas of functionality still needed in the Koha system for Bibliomation libraries to maintain the level of functionality that they have now. Many of these areas we anticipate to be consortial-related.

LibLime staff will be spending two days at Bibliomation headquarters later this month (August 18th and 19th) so that we can discuss our workflow needs and how Koha fits in to this workflow. We've given LibLime access to our Koha test server and private wiki. We've been using the wiki to track our configuration work and findings regarding the Koha system.

Once we have the results of the study, we should know which modules and features would need development work and the costs associated with this work.

The results will be brought to the next Bibliomation Board meeting, scheduled for Thursday, September 25th.


Friday, August 1, 2008

Plano ISD -- Independent Schools District (Texas)

I was able to chat with David Schuster, Library Technology Coordinator for Plano Independent Schools District (ISD) in Texas. Plano ISD has 68 schools, ranging from pre-school to high school.

David plans to cut over to Koha on January 1, 2009. He's been working with LibLime and plans to sign a three-year contract with them to provide migration support and maintenance to their Koha installation. His libraries will be set up as independent branches. They will not share holds.

David and his team chose Koha because it provided the promise of continuous changes to the look and functionality of the ILS. It also has a web-based staff client, very easy to roll out new changes to all of his schools. Customization is very important to Plano ISD.

David thinks that he might sponsor some development work for the inventory control module that comes with Koha. Right now, the only thing the inventory control feature does is flag the item on the shelf. It does not provide detailed information regarding misshelved items or incorrect code information (wrong collection, etc.). He'd also like to see improvements made in spine label printing. Right now, Koha can only print spine labels in batches, not for an individual item.

Another possibility for sponsored work -- David is considering working with LibLime somewhere down the line to produce an icon-driven kid's catalog.

Other enhancements David would like to see with Koha:
  • Annual circ history information for each item
  • Batch creation of items
  • Batch editing of items
  • Off-line circulation module
  • Item barcode lookup for editing purposes
  • Reports are fabulous, but there needs to be a set of standard reports that can be easily shared among all libraries (maybe this exists now, but David hasn't seen it yet)

David has been told that there is work being sponsored right now to provide the ability for Koha users to perform batch item deletes.

LibLime will be providing custom style sheets for his elementary, middle and high school libraries.

I will touch base again with David sometime after January 1st.