Minutes of February 19, 1998 Meeting

Mark Witteman (presiding), Harriette Hemmasi, Judy Gardner, Rhonda Marker, Mary Page, Tracey Meyer, Ann Montanaro, Bob Warwick, Nancy Hendrickson, Peter Graham (recorder)


  1. Preliminary report from the Reports Subcommittee (Nancy, Bob & Tracey)
  2. New equipment (Ann)
  3. Unicorn98 and WorkFlows -- possible/tentative schedules (Mark)
  4. RUL & SIRSI and the request module (Mark & Peter)
  5. RUL's presence at UUGI (Unicorn Users Group International) annual meeting in Huntsville, May 1998 (whole group)
  6. Round-robin update

1. Reports Subcommittee: NH complimented the group on working very well together (Hendrickson, Warwick, Meyer, Ananthan, Keehbler). The group proposed a regrouping of the reports structure into report types rather than in the vendor-distributed functional areas (report is available from the Chair). There are now five main categories, in increasing potential for "danger" (i.e. damage to the data base): counts, lists, notices, maintenance and system operations. The groups were kept relatively large in order to allow authorized users as much exposure to potential reports as possible.

It was agreed that users will not be authorized for a report level until they are trained in that level. In general, authorization for higher levels will imply authorization for lower levels. We agreed to plan for early training in levels 1 and 2 (counts and lists) for all comers, with sessions organized by functional area (e.g. circ, selectors). Training and authorization procedures for groups 3-5 will be considered when we all have more experience with the first two. The Reports Subcommittee will next be looking at training issues and training schedules.

2. New Equipment: AM reported that about 20 barcode guns will shortly be ordered. The delay has been due to the wait to get samples of guns from more than one vendor, including Sirsi; these have now all arrived and will be quickly tested. The intent is for all major circ desks to have a couple.

3. Unicorn98 and WorkFlows: MW reported on possible schedules. Unicorn98 (formerly known as v.10) will be a modest server upgrade but will enable the Workflow upgrade on clients; its limited release (not us) is due in March, with full release due in May. Workflows limited release on a similar schedule, but not for all functions. The Request capabilities we have asked for are due in June. These variant releases present issues for us in planning changes and training.

We agreed that training should take place based on what we need at the time rather than trying to anticipate Sirsi upgrades. We will revisit the upgrade/update issue as more is known.

4. RUL & SIRSI and the request module: We briefly discussed the conversation of PG and Jane Grauemeyer of Sirsi last week: Sirsi hopes to provide "most of" what we have been asking for in a June limited release to us, and will provide documentation in March that we will be asked to comment on. We await the proof of the pudding.

5. RUL's presence at UUGI: Seeing opportunities for learning a great deal from others, and for influencing vendor views and developments, we agreed it would be useful to send a contingent of more than one or two people to the Huntsville Sirsi user group meeting in mid-May. Several present volunteered to attend. PG will investigate costs and funding and work with Libraries Administration to build a list of attendees. PG asked those wishing to go to communicate promptly their meeting-agenda items of interest.

6. Round-robin:

HH (PacImp): PacImp is currently discussing

  1. default record display
  2. hot links--what should be and what shouldn't.

There was a brief discussion of the numbers appearing after headings on a browse search; PacImp's conclusion was that on balance they help more than hinder, though there are evident problems when searching on titles, especially serial titles. Unfortunately the numbers cannot be removed for some searches (journal titles for example) and left in place for other searches (subjects and authors for example).

Help screens have been completed (thanks to Ann Scholz-Crane and others); they are ready for MW.

JG (CircImp): A meeting is planned over spring break for the Request Service staff in locations and the A team to exchange information. Members of CircImp are also considering ongoing training needs for circ employees.

RM (CatImp): Authorities subcommittee is proceeding on three fronts:

  1. the authorities module in the test system is on, and records are being entered;
  2. the RFP questions and criteria are being prepared;
  3. local (RUL) policy decisions are being prepared.

The Advanced Searching subcommittee is preparing training, probably for April, in both Infoview and Smartport. The discussion ended up agreeing that there is a need for advanced searching training at all levels, Webcat and Infoview, in all functions (e.g. ref, circ, cat, acq, etc.); actual training responsibilities in each of these areas were not determined.

As part of this discussion it was agreed that we would revive an IRIS column in the Agenda, which all will contribute to and to be coordinated by HH.

MP (SerImp): Projects:

TM (TrainImp): Working with CircImp on advanced circ. training preparation.

NH (Fiscal): The fiscal office is devoting energies to serial invoice payments, and hopes to have most of these entered by early April; it is very labor-intensive. Then they will proceed to entering recurring-order payments (standing orders, mono. series, etc.) after Acq enters the order records; then they will proceed to memberships, bulk orders, and the like.

Most allocations have now been entered, though not yet for non-state funds.

PG (Acq): The GTI project to Get In the serials order records is mostly complete, and the remnant (a few hundred of low-use vendors) being held until after the following project. The present LIS project is to enter orders for recurring orders (STO's and monographic series); it is hoped this will take no more than about three weeks.

MW: MW spent Monday at the University of Virginia working primarily with their WebCat person, Chris Herecki; gained knowledge of the context-sensitive help capabilities and web design, and imparted knowledge as well.

Next meeting (CHANGE): Wed., March 4, 1.30 p.m., TSB conference room; following meeting Thursday, March 19, 1.30, same place.

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