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ERIC Number: EJ878693
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010
Pages: 4
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1041-7915
Fear and Trembling in Connecticut: (Or "How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love Open Source")
Terlaga, Amy
Computers in Libraries, v30 n1 p13-15, 30 Jan-Feb 2010
In March 2007, SirsiDynix notified its Horizon and classic Dynix customers that it would not be releasing Horizon 8.0 in favor of developing its Unicorn software. As vice president/president-elect of SirsiDynix's Horizon/Dynix user group, the author was one of the first ones to be notified of this abrupt change in company strategy. The news sent shock waves through the SirsiDynix user community. The author is assistant director, user services, of Bibliomation, a Connecticut consortium of 48 public libraries and 20 K-12 schools. Faced with an ILS migration, this daunting inevitability became the primary focus of Bibliomation's spring 2008 strategic planning meetings. The end result of their planning process--to begin an exploration of open source ILS systems as a viable alternative to the ever-shrinking proprietary vendor marketplace to determine their feasibility for the network. In developing that strategic plan, a possible migration to an open source system was discussed at length and embraced by everyone else on the strategic planning committee, despite the author's reservations. In this article, the author, a recovering open-source-ILS-phobe, tells her story of how she learned to stop worrying and love open source. She discusses her four issues with their pending migration to an open source ILS and how they were resolved: (1) Lack of knowledge and support; not enough in-house staff with expertise to support it--Resolved by Bibliomation's hiring of two new key positions and the creation of an open source team; (2) Not enough time, timeline was too short; open source too new--Resolved by lengthening timeline to September 2011 to give open source time to ripen; (3) Fear that the code would be too buggy and unstable--Resolved by actually testing Evergreen and seeing how stable the releases are; few patches in between releases; and (4) Uncertain future; open source like the Wild West; fear of code forking and their system being a dead branch--Resolved by partnering with Equinox, whose corporate culture seems all about sharing the load with other open source vendors, such as Brendan Gallagher's company, ByWater Solutions.
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: Adult Education; Elementary Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Connecticut