Erik Mitchell, Kevin Gilbertson, Cristina Yu, Mary Scanlon, Ellen Daugman, Steve Kelley and I all attended the LAUNC-CH conference at Chapel Hill on March 9, 2009.
I attended the Next Generation Library Systems session from 12:45 to 2:15. That presentation, not surprisingly, focused on the OLE Project, (Jean Ferguson and John Little were presenters) and had a presentation about Endeca, with Derek Rodriguez.
John Little, From Duke, began to discuss OLE (which stands for Open Library Environment) by asking the conference attendees the following questions to frame the logic for the development of OLE, and to wake us up since his presentation was right after lunch:
Do you believe that business processes at libraries are more similar than they are different?
Do you agree that in 10 years anything that is not digital will be invisible?
Do you agree that in 5 years your consortial arrangements will be just as important as work at your home institution?
Do you believe that any backlog longer than 6 months is irrelevant?
Do you believe that in 5 years all library work will be done on the network?
Among the attendees, the first question was resoundingly agreed to. The second, third and fourth questions much less so. The last question was pretty much 50/50 with many people responding to the “I don’t know” third option. He challenged librarians who believed his questions were false. One challenge to the “backlog” question came from a librarian who worked in special collections who maintained that when handling rare and special collections, no backlog is irrelevant. Another librarian maintained that “to the serious researcher, whether or not something is digitized is not important, so nothing is invisible” and John conceded that point.
He then moved onto an overview of the OLE project and described how the SOA (Service Oriented Architecture) would define the project’s development.The first part of the project is to be completed by July, per the terms of the grant from the Mellon Foundation.The second phase of the project, the “writing” the software phase, will then presumably be funded, and completed over the next few years.
The next speaker was Derek Rodriguez from TRLN, Triangle Research Library Network whose job is to assess metadata fitness for next generation library systems.He spoke about and then demonstrated Endeca.Endeca is a discovery and request layer that works with an ILS to allow a user to search and request from several library systems at one time.The request, if not being fulfilled through the user’s home library automatically creates an ILL request.It allows for easy sharing of materials among all of the libraries of the TRLN which includes UNC, Duke, NC State, and NCCU.