OPAC Home > Bibliography

Andrews, Mark. “Changing Markets, Changing Relationships: How Libraries and Vendors Respond to the ‘Next Generation’ Challenge.” Library Hi Tech 25, no. 4 (2007): 562-578.

  • Andrews focuses on multiple fronts facing the catalog, and he gives an in-depth look at libraries’ current needs. This document may be helpful for those looking to create a request for proposal (RFP).
  • Incidentally, if you are in the market for a new ILS, Marshall Breeding’s Library Technology Guides (see below) is an excellent resource. Also, Richard Wayne has created a list of vendors with particular attributes. See: Wayne, Richard. “Helping You Buy: Integrated Library Systems.” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 23-30. Finally, Jason Ronollo created a Ruby on Rails (RoR) reinterpretation of Wayne’s 2006 list at http://ronallo.com/jason/ils_chooser/ .

Antelman, Kristen, Lynema, Emily, and Andrew K. Pace. “Toward a Twenty-First Century Library Catalog.” Information Technology & Libraries 25, no. 3 (September 2006): 128-139.

  • Antelman, Lynema, and Pace give an in-depth look at North Carolina State University’s rollout of their Endeca system. Their discussion of implementation is particularly noteworthy, and their assessment results seem encouraging.

Bahr, Ellen. “Dreaming of a Better ILS. (cover story).” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 10-14.

  • Bahr asked a number of library technology experts what a better ILS would look like. Bahr notes that a number of the respondents saw a need to partially decouple the OPAC from the ILS.

Bailey, Annette. “LibX – a Firefox extension for enhanced library access.” Library Hi Tech 24, no. 2 (2006): 290-304.

  • One of the first plug-ins for OPAC integration in the Firefox Internet browser, LibX was on the bleeding edge. Bailey brings up an interesting point (besides meeting your users where they already are)–bringing quality to Web searches. Hopefully, our users care.

Baker, Nicholas C. “Plug Your Users Into Library Resources With OpenSearch Plug-Ins. (cover story).” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 16-25.

  • Again, by being integrated into the Firefox Internet browser, OpenSearch is a way to bring your catalog to wherever your users are. Baker wrote about his experiences with OpenSearch at Williams College, and he indicated that a plug-in for the Grove Dictionary of Art was due to be deployed in the autumn of 2007.

Balas, Janet L. “Will the ILS Soon Be as Obsolete as the Card Catalog?” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 41-43.

  • Balas offers quick summaries of Schneider’s work (see below) as well as others.

Barrera, Antonio, et al. 2007. 2007 Code4Lib Conference Report. Library Hi Tech News 24, no. 6:4-7.

  • Barrera covers three strategies for OPAC innovation. They are as follows: layering new services over existing systems, replacing existing systems, and replacing pieces of existing systems with newer open source alternatives.
  • The third strategy has given birth to faceted browsing, social bookmarking, and other techniques currently being implemented in next-gen OPACs.

Beccaria, Mike, and Dan Scott. “Fac-Back-OPAC. (cover story).” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 6-56.

  • Beccaria and Scott offer interesting ideas for next-gen OPACs. Specifically, they discuss their need for a stable backup OPAC and the need to decouple discovery tools from the traditional ILS.

Bisson, Casey. “Building Web 2.0 Native Library Services.” Internet Librarian 2007, Monterey, CA, October 31, 2008. http://oz.plymouth.edu/~cbisson/presentations/IL-2007Oct31.pdf (accessed April 30, 2008).

  • Bisson built Scriblio (formally WPopac). Scriblio is an OPAC and content management system (CMS) that uses the free WordPress blogging software as a platform to deliver many next-generation OPAC features.
  • For more information on Scriblio, go to http://about.scriblio.net/
  • For more information on Casey Bisson, go to http://maisonbisson.com/

Breeding, Marshall. “The Birth of a New Generation of Library Interfaces.” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 34-37.

  • Breeding lists essential features for next-gen OPACs as well as various vendors’ products.

—. “Content, Community, and Visibility: A Winning Combination.” Computers in Libraries 28, no. 4. (April 2008), http://proxy.uchicago.edu/login?url=http://proquest.umi.com.proxy.uchicago.edu/pqdweb?did=1460558521&sid=2&Fmt=3&clientId=13392&RQT=309&VName=PQD (accessed April 28, 2008).

—. “Library Technology Guides: Key Resources in the Field of Library Automation.” http://www.librarytechnology.org/ (accessed April 28, 2008)

  • This site is maintained by Marshall Breeding, Director for Innovative Technology and Executive Director of the Television News Archive at Vanderbilt University. The latest innovations in library technology, surveys of library system implementations, and a prolific amount of information on the topic are presented in a well-organized fashion in plain English.

—. “Next-Generation Flavor in Integrated Online Catalogs.” Library Technology Reports 43, no. 4 (July 2007): 38-41.

  • Breeding provides a nice list of vendor products and their corresponding features.

—. “OPAC Sustenance: Ex Libris to Serve-Up Primo.” Young Adult Library Services 4, no. 3 (Spring 2006): 1-4.

  • Breeding offers an in-depth review of Primo which, at that time, was a prototype due to be rolled out in 2006.

—. “Thinking About Your Next OPAC.” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 4 (April 2007): 28-30.

  • Breeding offers good descriptions of some of the key elements in next-gen OPACS, and he lists vendors currently working on products to provide next-gen OPAC experiences.

Byrum Jr., John D. “Recommendations for Urgently Needed Improvement of OPAC and the Role of the National Bibliographic Agency in Achieving It.” International Cataloging & Bibliographic Control 36, no. 1 (January 2007): 75-81.

Calhoun, Karen. The Changing Nature of the Catalog and Its Integration with Other Discovery Tools: Final Report. N.p.: Library of Congress, 2006. http://www.loc.gov/catdir/calhoun-report-final.pdf (accessed April 29, 2008).

  • See Also: Joudrey, Daniel N.
  • See Also: Mann, Thomas

Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science. “The Informedia Project.”
http://www.informedia.cs.cmu.edu/ (accessed April 28, 2008).

Chudnov, Daniel. “Delivering What People Need, When and Where They Need It.” Computers in Libraries 27, no. 9 (October 2007): 31-33.

  • Chudnov proposes the creation of a personal and portable library catalog. It is a very interesting notion–especially when the same principles are being discussed within health care.

Dempsey, Lorcan. “The Library Catalogue in the New Discovery Environment: Some Thoughts.” Ariadne 48 (July 2006). http://www.ariadne.ac.uk/issue48/dempsey/ (accessed April 29, 2008).

  • Dempsey offers excellent insight into the larger scope of discovery and how the OPAC fits into that universe.

Digital Library Federation Integrated Library System and Discovery Systems Task Force. “ILS and Discovery Systems Group Wiki.” https://project.library.upenn.edu/confluence/display/ilsapi/Home (accessed April 28, 2008).

  • This report was produced to increase the interoperation of integrated library systems (ILS) with discovery interfaces. It details recommendations for a standards-based API (applied programming interface) for extracting data from the ILS, making the data easier to use in non-ILS applications providing course management, tagging, patron account management, and other library 2.0 features. The report summarizes a survey of 100+ libraries’ plans for ILS and discovery tools. The survey is available on the group’s wiki. Although there is necessarily much technical information in the report, the introduction and “rationale” sections provide a basic outline of the problems at hand and their recommended solutions in plain English. The glossary defines the basic terminology of next-generation discovery interfaces.

Eden, Brad. “Reinventing the OPAC.” Library Technology Reports 43, no. 6 (November 2007): 13-40.

  • The former Head, Web and Digitization Services, for the University of Nevada (Las Vegas) has put together an extraordinary annotated bibliography on ILS, next-gen OPACs, and cataloging. His perspective as a manager comes through in his annotations. Many of his citations made there way into this bibliography.

El-Sherbini, Magda, and Amanda J. Wilson. “New Strategies for Delivering Library Resources to Users: Rethinking the Mechanisms in which Libraries are Processing and Delivering Bibliographic Records.” Journal of Academic Librarianship 33, no. 2 (March 2007): 228-242.

Fox, Robert. “DIGITAL LIBRARIES: THE SYSTEMS ANALYSIS PERSPECTIVE: “The great pig roast”.” OCLC Systems & Services 23, no. 3 (2007): 242-249.

Graves, Stephanie and Margie Ruppel. “Usability Testing and Instruction Librarians: A Perfect Pair.” Internet Reference Services Quarterly 11, no. 4 (2006), http://www.haworthpress.com.proxy.uchicago.edu/store/E-Text/View_EText.asp?sid=2DQQPN12RSUC9JWJ91UEVBWJTAMCA5EC&a=3&s=J136&v=11&i=4&fn=J136v11n04%5F07 (accessed April 28, 2008).

  • Usability testing is an essential element of implementing a discovery interface or next generation online catalog. This article is based on a small survey of instruction librarians who have participated in usability testing. The findings describe the benefits of usability testing for instruction librarians and demonstrate the need for instruction librarians to be involved in the system implementation process.

ILS Assessment: A Background Document. Windsor, Ontario: Univ. of Windsor, 2007. http://infoservices.uwindsor.ca/dist/backgrounder.pdf (accessed April 30, 2008).

  • This document was born out of the discussions held on November 15, 2006, at the Hilton hotel in Windsor, Canada
  • See Also: Rethinking How We Provide Bibliographic Services….
    • Another interesting look at the process of addressing OPACs and users’ needs

Jastram, Iris. “ILS Futures Forum.” Roy Tennant lecture summary, ILS Futures Forum, Saint Paul, MN, Nov. 10, 2006. http://people.carleton.edu/~ijastram/documents/ILS_Future.pdf (accessed April 30, 2008).

Joudrey, Daniel N. “The Changing Nature of the Catalog and Its Integration with Other Discovery Tools: Final Report/Rethinking How We Provide Bibliographic Services for the University of California: Final Report.” Library Resources & Technical Services 50, no. 4 (October 2006): 295-297.

  • See Also: Rethinking How We Provide Bibliographic Services….
    • This is one of the reports that Joudry references

Kemp, Rebecca. “Catalog/Cataloging Changes and Web 2.0 Functionality: New Directions for Serials.” Serials Librarian 53, no. 4 (2007): 92-112.

Khurshid, Zahiruddin, and Syed Sajjad Ahmed. “From online catalogs to library portals: empowering users.” VINE: The Journal of Information & Knowledge Management Systems 37, no. 3 (2007): 275-283.

Lease Morgan, Eric. “Archives of NGC4LIB@LISTSERV.ND.EDU.” Infomotions, Inc. http://serials.infomotions.com/ngc4lib/ (accessed April 28, 2008).

  • The Next Generation Catalogs for Libraries mailing list–a model list with well-organized, highly relevant, productive discussions. Because many systems librarians contribute to the discussion, the topics can be somewhat technical. The intelligent content–ranging from subject headings to web protocols–will give you a glimpse of the future of libraries and the possibilities that arise with collaboration.

Lease Morgan, Eric. “Next Generation Catalogs in Fifteen Minutes.” http://infomotions.com/musings/ngc-in-fifteen-minutes/ (accessed April 28, 2008).

  • A concise, easy-to-understand introduction to next generation catalogs. Includes a compelling diagram of a next generation library system implementation.

Mann, Thomas. “‘The Changing Nature of the Catalog and Its Integration with Other Discovery Tools. Final Report.’ March 17, 2006. Prepared for the Library of Congress by Karen Calhoun. A Critical Review by Thomas Mann,” April 4, 2006.

Summary from http://guild2910.org/future.htm:

“According to the Calhoun report, library operations that are not digital, that do not result in resources that are remotely accessible, that involve professional human judgement or expertise, or that require conceptual categorization and standardization rather than relevance ranking of keywords, do not fit into its proposed “leadership” strategy. This strategy itself, however, is based on an inappropriate business model – and a misrepresentation of that business model to begin with. The Calhoun report draws unjustified conclusions about the digital age, inflates wishful thinking, fails to make critical distinctions, and disregards (as well as mischaracterizes) an alternative “niche” strategy for research libraries, to promote scholarship (rather than increase “market position”). Its recommendations to eliminate Library of Congress Subject Headings, and to use “fast turnaround” time as the “gold standard” in cataloging, are particularly unjustified, and would have serious negative consequences for the capacity of research libraries to promote scholarly research.”

—. “The Peloponnesian War and the Future of Reference, Cataloging, and Scholarship in Research Libraries.” http://www.guild2910.org (accessed April 28, 2008).

Markey, Karen. “The Online Library Catalog:Paradise Lost and Paradise Regained?.” D-Lib Magazine 13, no. 1/2 (January 2007): 1-1.

Miller, Paul. “Coming Together around Library 2.0.” D-Lib Magazine 12, no. 4 (April 2006): 7-7.

“NYU CHOOSES ALEPH. (Cover story).” Advanced Technology Libraries 36, no. 12 (December 2007): 1-9.

Olson, Tod A. “Utility of a Faceted Catalog for Scholarly Research.” Library Hi Tech 25, no. 4 (2007), http://proxy.uchicago.edu/login?url=http://proquest.umi.com.proxy.uchicago.edu/pqdweb?did=1462846871&sid=1&Fmt=2&clientId=13392&RQT=309&VName=PQD (accessed April 28, 2008).

Penn State University Libraries. “Visual Image User Study (VIUS).” http://www.libraries.psu.edu/vius/index.html (accessed April 28, 2008).

Ralston, Michelle. “Developments in the OPAC World: A Panel Discussion.” Symposium on the Future of Integrated Library Systems Blog (September 17, 2007). http://lincolntrail.typepad.com/ilssymposium/2007/09/developments-in.html (accessed April 30, 2008).

  • A good, high level summary of various libraries using Endeca, LibraryThing, and WordCat Local (WCL)
  • The blog also offers podcasts of various presentations during the symposium which was held September 12-15, 2007.
  • For more information on the symposium, go to http://www.ltls.org/ilssymposium2007/intropage.html

Rethinking How We Provide Bibliographic Services for the University of California. N.p.: Univ. of California Libraries, 2005. http://libraries.universityofcalifornia.edu/sopag/BSTF/Final.pdf (accessed April 30, 2008).

  • See Also: Joudry, Daniel N. “The Changing Nature….”
    • Joudry provides interesting commentary on this document
  • See Also: ILS Assessment: A Background Document
    • Another interesting look at the process of addressing OPACs and users’ needs

Schneider, Karen. “How OPACs Suck, Part 1: Relevance Rank (Or the Lack of It).” ALA TechSource Blog. http://www.techsource.ala.org/blog/2006/03/how-opacs-suck-part-1-relevance-rank-or-the-lack-of-it.html (accessed April 29, 2008).

  • Scneider’s three part series succinctly outlines the problems traditional OPACs face when compared to the features of other Web-based applications. The dialogue within the comments is also equally interesting.

—. “How OPACs Suck, Part 2: The Checklist of Shame.” ALA TechSource Blog. http://www.techsource.ala.org/blog/2006/04/how-opacs-suck-part-2-the-checklist-of-shame.html (accessed April 29, 2008).

—. “How OPACs Suck, Part 3: The Big Picture.” ALA TechSource Blog. http://www.techsource.ala.org/blog/2006/05/how-opacs-suck-part-3-the-big-picture.html (accessed April 29, 2008).

State Hermitage Museum. “Query By Image Content (QBIC) Color and Layout Searches.” http://www.hermitagemuseum.org/fcgi-bin/db2www/qbicSearch.mac/qbic?selLang=English (accessed April 28, 2008).

  • IBM began this project for the Hermitage Museum in 1997. Although the technology is older, I have not been able to find anything comparable elsewhere that’s available to the general public. Google is continually developing related image search capabilities, but used behind the scenes with the basic google search box as an interface.

Tennant, Roy. “Academic Library Futures.” Library Journal 131, no. 20 (December 01, 2006): 34-34.

—. “A Bibliographic Metadata Infrastructure for the Twenty-First Century.” Library Hi Tech 22, no. 2 (2004): 175-181.

—. “Demise of the Local Catalog.” Library Journal 132, no. 12 (July 01, 2007): 26-26.

Villén-Rueda, Luis, Senso, Jose A., and Félix De Moya-Anegón. “The Use of OPAC in a Large Academic Library: A Transactional Log Analysis Study of Subject Searching.” Journal of Academic Librarianship 33, no. 3 (May 2007): 327-337.

  • An interesting look at user search behavior. The authors report that, as a last resort, users engage in subject searches (after title and author, respectively).

Wells, David. What is a library OPAC? The Electronic Library 25, no. 4 (2007):386-394.

  • Wells looks at the OPAC through the lenses of semiotics, communication theory, and the philosophy of information. He argues that OPAC design should not be labeled as intuitive, and he advises that proper OPAC literacy is needed for both library staff and users. Wells’ point of view is an interesting contrast to those who advance relevancy ranking–especially when users do not understand relevancy criteria. In essence, users are balancing their needs for quality information and the amount of effort they are willing to expend.

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