One thing I haven't heard anyone talk about is that while MARC can be
complicated, the abundance of MARC records available makes it rather
easy to populate an ILS as long as you don't have to do [mostly]
original cataloging. For example, the Career Development Center on
campus here uses Koha. They do not have any librarians on staff but
have a collection of books they circulate. The Libraries' Head of
Cataloging and I provided basic training to one of the peopel there on
how to use the system and they have been largely self-sufficient since
then. They are able to import MARC records for books using Koha's
built-in Z39.50 interface from other libraries. They didn't need to
learn the intricacies of MARC. For some special in-house things we
provided a little bit of training on how to make a basic MARC record.
If a system was used that didn't use MARC it is likely, at least in
our experience, to be more work since things would have to all be
created in-house. Of course, your mileage may vary.
On Wed, Mar 14, 2012 at 2:11 PM, Bess Sadler <[log in to unmask]> wrote:
> Hi, Matt.
> Welcome to code4lib. Good question! Here's a quick summary of my understanding of what I think you're asking:
> Q1. Is there an ILS that is not based on MaRC records?
> A1. No, not to my knowledge. Yes, marc cataloging can seem tedious and arcane, but we have lots of tools for working with it at this point. All commercial ILS vendors that I am aware of use it, and the open source ILS products I know of also use MaRC.
> Q2. Is that what this Endeca based thing is about?
> A2. Kind of, a little. For most libraries, physical (and to some extent digital) inventory of collections is maintained by their ILS. Usually this is a commercial vendor solution, maybe even one with a six figure contract attached to it, but open source ILS solutions are increasingly viable and widespread. Migrating away from an ILS is an enormous undertaking, one that overhauls every workflow process in the library. Many libraries are in the position of not wanting to migrate their ILS, but disliking the public-facing interface provided by the ILS vendor. For years these interfaces were difficult to change and many of us felt that it was leading to stagnation in the library innovation space, because we were competing for attention with Internet based services that could respond to user desires quickly. The standard solution has been, not to switch away from MaRC or the ILS, but to index those records into a separate discovery interface, one which the library has control ove!
> r. That's what Endeca is, but it is very expensive. People who have implemented it are contractually prevented from saying exactly how expensive but I've never signed an NDA and I've heard numbers in the millions. There are several free open source library discovery solutions (Blacklight, VuFind, Kobald Chieftan (sp?) that you could play around with if you wanted. But these are for solving discovery problems, not for simplifying your internal metadata standards.
> I hope this helps. Welcome to the community and good luck to you.
> On Mar 14, 2012, at 5:59 AM, Matt Amory wrote:
>> Is there a full-featured ILS that is not based on MARC records?
>> I know we love complexity, but it seems to me that my public library and
>> its library network and maybe even every public library could probably do
>> without 95% of MARC Fields and encoding, streamline workflows and save $ if
>> there were a simpler standard.
>> Is this what an Endeca-based system is about, or do those rare birds also
>> use MARC in the background?
>> Forgive me if the question has been hashed and rehashed over the years...
>> Matt Amory
>> (917) 771-4157
>> [log in to unmask]