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Backing Library Operations with Open Source Applications


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Presentation from Leading Edge Libraries Conference, September 21, 2017, hosted by the Florida-Caribbean Chapter of the Special Libraries Association. This presentation debunks a few myths about open source software, presents five qualities to look for in an open source solution, gives a brief cost-benefit analysis of open source, and takes a look at Koha, SubjectsPlus, Omeka, and ResourceSpace.

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Backing Library Operations with Open Source Applications

  1. 1. BACKING LIBRARY OPERATIONS WITH OPEN SOURCE APPLICATIONS Myka Kennedy Stephens Seminary Librarian Lancaster Theological Seminary Lancaster, Pennsylvania
  2. 2. Overview ● Debunking Myths of Open Source Software ● Top 5 Qualities to Look for in Open Source Solutions ● Cost Benefit Analysis of Open Source Solutions ● Closer Look at Some Open Source Solutions for Libraries
  3. 3. Myths of Open Source Software Requires Advanced Computer Skills Intermediate Skills are helpful, but not essential Unpolished and bug-ridden Community-driven development observes QA standards Difficult to support and drain resources Good support, paid and volunteer, is available in most OSS communities
  4. 4. Top 5 Qualities of Good Open Source Solutions For Those Considering Open Source
  5. 5. Stable Community Look for Open Source solutions that have an active and stable community of users and developers. #1
  6. 6. Solid Documentation User manuals, installation Instructions, and other support documentation need to be readily available. #2
  7. 7. Recent Updates Software updates and patches released on a regular schedule is a sign of strong developer support. #3
  8. 8. Pathways for Feedback Clear routes to post questions, make suggestions, get help, and connect with the community make it easier to find answers when you need them #4
  9. 9. Try before Committing Take advantage of demo sites or download and install the software on a localhost before deciding to invest in the solution. #5
  10. 10. Cost vs. Benefit ● Hosting and support expense ● Set up and customization ● Ongoing maintenance ● Investment ● No license fees ● Professional skill building ● More control ● Community involvement
  11. 11. Meet a few:
  12. 12. 1. Koha
  13. 13. What? ● Integrated Library System ● Created in New Zealand by Katipo Communications, now developed internationally ● Updates released every six months ● Embedded web-based documentation ● Full-featured modules for circulation, patron management, cataloging, authority file, acquisitions, serials, and reports ● Responsive OPAC built on Bootstrap ● Flexible with multiple integration possibilities
  14. 14. In Action
  15. 15. 2. SubjectsPlus
  16. 16. What? ● Guides Platform (Springshare’s LibGuides) ● Ongoing development at University of Miami Libraries ● Wiki-based documentation, Google Group user community ● Flexible and Feature-packed: FAQs, Talkback page, A-Z resource list ● Responsive design fueled by CSS ● API capability
  17. 17. In Action
  18. 18. 3. Omeka
  19. 19. What? ● Web publishing for digital archives and online exhibits ● Developed by Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media ● Expansive documentation on website with hosted forums for user community ● Customizable themes and plugins ● Metadata on multiple levels: file, item, collection, exhibit ● Dublin Core
  20. 20. In Action
  21. 21. 4. ResourceSpace
  22. 22. What? ● Digital Asset Management Platform ● Developed by Montala Ltd., originally commissioned by Oxfam ● Hosted Knowledge Base documentation, bug tracker, and Google Group for user community ● Automatically harvests metadata, including full-text ● Users log in to access content
  23. 23. In Action
  24. 24. Thank You! Myka Kennedy Stephens Seminary Librarian & Assistant Professor Lancaster Theological Seminary Lancaster, Pennsylvania Email: Facebook: @mykakennedystephens Blog: Presentation template by SlidesCarnival