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Annual survey of PC- and Mac-based library system vendors

Library Systems Newsletter [May 1996]

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Each year LSN surveys the library automation industry to get an overview of the market and to facilitate comparison among vendors. The March and April combined issue described the vendors of library automation products which use UNIX and other multi-user operating systems. This issue is devoted to the vendors of PC-based and Mac-based multi-function products-those using the DOS or Macintosh operating system to support at least three modules, including either circulation or patron access catalog. Not included are vendors offering only a single module such as acquisitions, serials control, or cataloging; or two modules such as cataloging or a union database and interlibrary loan (ILL).

While most vendors included herein offer only software packages, this report also identifies vendors that claim to sell "turnkey" systems. While our definition of turnkey includes provision of hardware, software, installation, training, and ongoing support from a single source, it is clear that many vendors do not regard installation and on-site training as part of the definition. We have therefore decided to replace the term "turnkey" with "bundled" which merely indicates that the vendor sells both software and hardware and sidesteps the questions of installation, on-site training, etc.

Unlike the multi-user systems market detailed in the March-April issue, many vendors of PC- and Mac-based systems do not offer integrated, multi-function systems with a wide range of functionality. While circulation is offered by nearly all PC- and Mac-based system vendors, patron access catalog by most, acquisitions by some, serials control by a few. Very few offer functionality beyond these core modules. In contrast, the multi-user systems surveyed in the previous issues support 10 to 14 modules each.

We have decided to avoid the counting of systems, because the number of Pcs or Macs in a library on which a vendor's software is installed can be one, ten, or scores. We, therefore, have chosen to use the term "units," which tallies the total number of PCs or Macs on which the clients are licensed to use the product.

Seventeen vendors responded to the survey questionnaire. Of these, seven offer both bundled products and software only; ten offer only software packages. Because of the large installed base of PCs and Macs in libraries, even the vendors that offer bundled products realize most of their revenue from software-only sales.

Two vendors--Data Trek and IME--offer very similar functionality for both multi-user and PC-based operating systems. Both are included in this report because they sell more PC-based products than multi-user products. However, Data Trek and IME merged in early 1996. It appears that future development of the IME product will focus on the multi-user operating system market.

The respondents sold a combined 21,591 units in 1995, down from the 25,132 reported at the end of 1994. The total probably represents 90% of all sales of PC- and Mac-based library applications software. The market for PC- and Mac-based library systems was approximately $90 million in 1995.

Follett and Winnebago reported gross sales of $25 to $30 million each; The Library Corporation reported gross sales of $10 to $15 million; and Data Trek and VTLS reported gross sales of $5 to $10 million each. The latter apparently included revenue from the sale of multi-user operating system products. We estimate that under $1 million is a more accurate figure. Nichols Advanced Technologies reported gross sales of $2.5 to $5 million. SIRS reported sales of $1 to $2.5 million. All other vendors either reported sales of under $1 million or failed to report this information.

Table 1 ranks the vendors according to the number of new units sold during 1995, as reported by the vendors themselves. Table 2 is a ranking of total number of installed and accepted units from vendors reporting at least 400 sales to date. Table 3 shows the number of staff devoted to software maintenance and development; Table 4, the number of staff devoted to sales and marketing; and Table 5, the number of staff devoted to other customer service.


Table 1. Unit Sales During 1995
Vendor Total Unit Sales
Follett 7,404
COMPanion Corp. 4,978
Winnebago 3,630
Inmagic 2,000
Data Trek 1,128
Brodart Automation 1,124
Nichols 779
SIRS 225
No other vendor reported selling more than 225 units in 1995.


Table 2. Total Number of Installed and Accepted Units
Vendor Total Installed Units
Follett 26,311
Winnebago 22,630
Inmagic 15,000
Library Corp. 6,200
COMPanion Corp. 5,800
Brodart Automation 5,343
Data Trek4,485
Nichols 3,048
IME 2,406
SIRS 1,346
Eloquent Systems 1,124
No other vendor has installed more than 400 systems. The combined total installed units is nearing 100,000.


Table 3. Staff Devoted to Software Maintenance and Development
VendorTotal Staff-
Sottware Maint . /Develop.
Follett 50
Winnebago 30
Library Corp. 30
IME 25
Data Trek 15
SIRS 12
Nichols 11.5
Brodart Automation 11
COMPanion Corp. 10
Inmagic 8
Eloquent Systems 7
No other vendor had more than 5 staff devoted to Software maintenance and development.


Table 4. Staff Devoted to Sales and Marketing
VendorTotal Staff-
Sales and Marketing
Follett 75
SIRS 60
Winnebago 55
IME 32
Brodart Automation 25
COMPanion Corp. 25
Data Trek 16
Library Corp. 11
Nichols 9
Chancery Software 8
Inmagic 7
No other vendor claimed to have more than 5 staff devoted to sales and marketing.


Table 5. Staff Devoted to Other Customer Support
VendorTotal Staff-
Other Customer Support
Follett 60
IME 52
Winnebago 30
COMPanion Corp. 25
Library Corp. 20
Brodart Automation 18
Data Trek 14
SIRS 9
Nichols 7
Inmagic 5
No other vendor had more than 5 staff devoted to customer support.

VENDOR REPORTS

Brodart Automation offers four products: LePac, Precision One Cataloging System, Precision One Integrated System, and Precision One Media Minder. The company's "primary emphasis is software production." The company recommends that hardware be purchased locally. Toll-free customer service is provided. Enhancements are released as necessary, usually once per year for Precision One Cataloging System and Precision One Media Minder; and twice per year for LePac and Precision One Integrated System.

LePac, Precision One Cataloging System, and Precision One Integrated System each run on IBM PC compatibles using the MS-DOS 5.0+ operating system, and a proprietary DBMS, written in "C," "C++," and Assembly. They are each available in both a standalone and LAN version; the LAN version has no maximum number of concurrent users. The maximum bibliographic record database is 4 GB; for LePac and Precision One Integrated System, the maximum bibliographic record storage is 20 Kb; and 5 Kb for Precision One Cataloging System. All three systems are capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. The company has 9 staff committed to software development and maintenance, 11 to marketing and sales, and 15 to other customer support.

Seven LePac packages were sold during 1995, with over 4,000 total units being supported (65% public libraries, 25% school, and 5% each academic and special libraries). The OPAC module was in use at all sites; ILL was at 85% of the sites. A CD-ROM interface was at all sites; a LAN interface was at 80% of the sites. Dial-in access was introduced in 1995.

The Precision One Cataloging System product reportedly had 1,034 software package sales during 1995. There were a total of 1,031 networked/3 standalone installed and accepted systems supported at year's end-1,020 networked/3 standalone systems in North America, 3 standalone systems in Asia/ Oceania, 7 standalone in Europe, and 1 standalone in South America (70% school libraries, 20% public, and 10% each academic and special libraries). The Precision One Integrated System product had 73 software-only sales during 1995. There were a total of 25 networked/29 standalone systems supported at year's end-all in North America (75% school libraries, 20% public, and 5% academic). All sites were using local cataloging, OPAC, and ILL modules; 90% each circulation and inventorying. A CD-ROM interface was at all sites; 90% each had a LAN interface and a Precision One Cataloging System interface; and 10% each had OCLC and BiblioFile interfaces. Centralized processing became available in 1995.

Precision One Media Minder runs on an IBM or compatible PC hardware platform and the DOS operating system, Btrieve for the DBMS, and Turbo Pascal as the programming language. It is available in both a standalone and LAN version; the number of LAN-version users is limited only by the size of the network. Bibliographic database and record size is limited only by the size of the platform's hard drive. The system can import and export MARC records, but information is not stored in MARC format. Ten software packages were sold during 1995-7 standalone/3 networked, bringing the total installed and accepted systems to 172 standalone/ 83 networked systems-all in North America (70% school libraries, 20% special, and 10% academic libraries). All sites were using OPAC, authority control, local cataloging, inventorying, materials booking, and report generator modules; and they were all using a LAN interface. For Media Minder, there were 2 staff committed to software development and maintenance, 14 to marketing and sales, and 3 to other customer support. Major software enhancements during 1995 included improved catalog production, additional check-in options, and additional cataloging options. Offices are maintained in the U.S. and Canada.

[Brodart Automation, 500 Arch Street, Williamsport, PA 17705; (800) 233-8467 ext. 640; fax (717) 327-9237; Internet: salesmktt@brodart.com; Web Page: http://www.brodart.com.]

Chancery Software, Ltd. offers a software-only product-known as Macschool Library Pro-which runs on Apple Macintosh hardware with the Mac/OS, written in PASCAL, using a proprietary DBMS, and available in both standalone and networked versions. The maximum database size is 65,000 records; the number of concurrent users varies with the LAN system being used. The system is capable of fully utilizing MARC bibliographic records. Toll-free customer support is provided. Enhancements are released as required, based on features requested. The company declined to release the total number or locations of installed and accepted systems, but did indicate that 99% of the packages were to school systems and 1% to special libraries. The company also declined to indicate how many software packages were sold during 1995, or gross sales or profitability. The company reported that all sites were using serials control, local cataloging, authority control, circulation, inventorying, OPAC, materials booking, and report generator. All sites had a BiblioFile interface; and half had a LAN interface. A staff of 3 was committed to software maintenance and development, 8 to sales and marketing, and 2 to other customer support. Major enhancements for 1995 included enhanced keyword search, new preferences to accommodate Follett barcodes, and enhanced MARC record functions.

[Chancery Software Ltd., 450 - 4170 Still Creek Drive, Burnaby, British Columbia VSC 6C6 Canada; (360) 738-3211; fax (604) 294-2225.]

COMPanion Corporation offers Alexandria as both bundled and as software only on the Macintosh or Power Macintosh hardware platforms using the MAC OS, System 7.x operating systems, a proprietary DBMS, and Pascal and "C++" as the programming languages. The product is available in both standalone and LAN versions. For the LAN version, the number of concurrent users is limited to 500; the maximum database size is 500,000. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC records. A toll-free number is provided for customer support. Software enhancements are released three times a year and are available to software subscription holders. There were 1,374 bundled and 3,604 software-only packages sold during 1995. At year's end, there were 1,500+ standalone/ 4,300+ LAN installed units--all in North America (98% school libraries, and 1% each special and academic libraries). All sites were using local cataloging, authority control, circulation, materials booking, report generator, and GUI OPAC modules; 85% each were using inventorying and the OPAC; 80% were using community information (I&R); 65% each were using acquisitions and serials control; and 10% ILL. A Brodart interface was at 30% of the sites; and 65% each had a LAN interface, remote database searching through gateway, and a CD-ROM interface. The company declined to provide sales figures, but stated that it realized an after-tax profit. A staff of 10 was committed to software maintenance and development, 25 to sales and marketing, and 25 to other customer support. Major software enhancements for 1995 included the ability to read Code 4 labels and the code required to transfer all data into the version 4.0 format. The company maintains several offices throughout the U.S.

[COMPanion Corp., 1831 Fort Union Blvd., Salt Lake City, UT 84121; (801) 943-7277; fax (801) 943-7752.]

Data Trek, Inc. offers Professional Series and Manager Series as both bundled and software-only products for PCs. Both systems run on MS-DOS and Windows, and are available in stand-alone and LAN versions. The maximum number of concurrent users on the LAN versions is determined by the host network limitations. Toll-free customer support is provided. Major upgrade releases are made every 12 to 18 months and are free to clients with an active software support subscription. Minor updates are released "as needed" and are free to all clients.

The Professional Series uses a proprietary DBMS and the "C" programming language. The maximum database size for bibliographic records is 500,000, 500,000 item records, and 500,000 patron records; and the system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. There were 9 bundled systems and 337 software-only modules sold during 1995. Total installations at the end of 1995 were 442 standalone/216 networked units installed and accepted-429 standalone/ 197 networked units in North America, 4 standalone/is networked in Europe, 7 standalone/4 networked in Asia/Oceania, and 2 standalone/2 networked systems in Africa/the Middle East (55% special libraries, 34% academic, 7% public, and 4% school libraries). Some 81% of the sites were using the local cataloging module (including authority control); 75% were using the OPAC, 65% circulation; 53% serials control; 35% GUI OPAC; and 34% acquisitions. Some 75% of the sites had the Databridge module, which included the capability to use OCLC, RLIN, WLN, BiblioFile, and UTLAS interfaces; 85% had a LAN interface; and 20% had a LAN interface. Z39.50 client had been sold to 2 clients at year-end, but was not yet installed. In 1995, over 150 software enhancements were made to version 2.1; the product shipped from 1994 through 1995.

The Manager Series uses dBase IV as the DBMS and is written in "C" and Clipper 5.2. The maximum database size for bibliographic records is 250,000, 250,000 item records, and 250,000 patron records; and the system is capable of taking in and outputting records in full-MARC format, but not storing them. There were 11 bundled and 771 software-only units sold during 1995. Total installations at the end of 1995 were 1,772 standalone/2,055 networked units-1,367 standalone/ 1,515 networked in North America, 333 standalone/519 networked in Europe, ES standalone/la networked in Asia/ Oceania, 17 standalone/S networked systems in South America, and 3 networked systems in Africa/the Middle East (62% were special libraries, 16% school, 13% academic, and 9% public libraries). Some 70% of the sites were using the local cataloging module (including authority control); 50% were using circulation (including inventorying); 40% were using serials control; 34% the OPAC; 26% acquisitions; 25% materials booking; 10% GUI OPAC; and 8% were using report generator. Some 34% of the sites had the Databridge module, which included the capability to use OCLC, RLIN, WLN, BiblioFile, and UTLAS interfaces; and 11% had a LAN interface. Z39.50 client was sold to 2 sites in 1995 but not yet installed. In 1995, over 200 software enhancements were made to version 2.0.

For both products, gross sales for 1995 were $5 to $10 million, with an after-tax profit. The company had 15 staff committed to software maintenance/development, 16 to marketing/ sales, and 14 to other customer support. Offices are located in the United States, Europe, and Australia.

[Data Trek, Inc., 5838 Edison Place, Carlsbad, CA 92008-6596; (619) 431-8400 or (800) 876-5484; fax (619) 431-8448; Internet: sales@datatrekcom; Web Page: http:www.datatrek.com.]

Eloquent Systems, Inc. offers The Eloquent Librarian (GENGAT) as a software-only package for PCs and LANs using DOS and DOS within Windows as the operating system, in both standalone and LAN versions. The DBMS is Advanced Revelation; it is written in RBasic. There is no limit to the number of concurrent users or database size. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. Enhancements are issued yearly. A total of 105 packages were sold in 1995. The vendor reported a total of 776 standalone/348 networked units installed and accepted at the end of 1995-all but three in North America (60% in school libraries, 30% special, and 5% each in public and academic libraries). All sites were using OPAC and report generator; 90% each were using local cataloging and authority control; 70% circulation; 20% inventorying; 7% materials booking; 5% each acquisitions, journal citation files, and serials control; and 2% were using community information. Two percent each were capable of utilizing remote database searching through a gateway and had a CD-ROM interface; 5% had an UTLAS interface; 20% each had BiblioFile and LaserQuest interfaces; and 45% a LAN interface. Revenues were under $1 million with an after-tax profit. There were 7 staff committed to software maintenance and development, 2 to sales and marketing, and 2 to other customer support.

[Eloquent Systems, Inc., 25 - 1501 Lonsdale Avenue, North Vancouver, British Columbia V7M 2J2 Canada; (604) 980-8358; fax (604) 980-9537; Internet: 75553.350l@compuserve.com; Web Page: http://www.eloquent.systems.com/gencat.]

Follett Software Company offers both bundled and software-only products- Alliance Plus (software only), Catalog Plus - MS-DOS (also Catalog Plus Mac for Apple lie and IIg with the Macintosh operating system using "C++" as the programming language), and Circulation Plus MS-DOS (also Circulation Plus Mac for Apple lie and IIg with the Macintosh operating system, written in "C++"). The systems operate under MS-DOS; and "C" and "C++" are the programming languages. Toll-free customer service is provided. Enhancements are released every 12-18 months, as needed. They are free to customers with current support; fee-based for non-support customers. A LAN version of both the DOS and Macintosh systems is available for all products. The maximum number of concurrent users is dependent only upon Network Operating System license agreements; the maximum database size depends on the hardware. The systems are capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. The company tracks only software package sales, not system sales.

The Alliance Plus product is a CD-ROM database and software. During 1995, 1,167 packages were sold. The Catalog Plus - MS-DOS product had 2,646 software package sales during 1995. Local cataloging and OPAC were in use at all the sites; a LAN interface was at 66% of the sites. The Catalog Plus MAC product had 417 software package sales during 1995. Local cataloging, OPAC, and GUI OPAC were in use at all the sites; a LAN interface was at 75% of the sites. Circulation Plus --MS-DOS had 2,754 software package sales during 1995. Local cataloging, circulation, and inventorying were in use at all the sites; a LAN interface was at 66% of the sites; and an Alliance Plus interface was at 20%. Catalog Plus MAC had 420 software package sales during 1995. Local cataloging, circulation, and inventorying were in use at all the sites; a LAN interface was at 75% of the sites; and an Alliance Plus interface was at some of the sites.

Overall, a total of 7,404 software packages were sold during 1995. The total installed and accepted base was 26,311-25,961 in North America (93% school libraries, 4% public, 2% special, and 1% academic libraries). The company reported gross revenues of $25-$30 million and an after-tax profit. A staff of 50 was committed to software development and maintenance; 75 to marketing and sales; and 60 to other customer support.

[Follett Software Company, 1391 Corporate Drive, McHenry, IL 60050-7041; (815) 344-8700 or (800) 323-3397; fax (815) 344-8774; Web Page: http://www.follett.com. I

The IME Group provides software only with an occasional bundled product sale. The product, The Information Navigator (TINLIB), is a multi-user, client-server, networked system. [As reported in the February, 1996 issue of LSN, IME was acquired by Data Trek, Inc., whose report can also be found in this issue of LSN.

The product runs on virtually any DOS, Windows, NT, OS/2, or UNIX operating system using the entity-relationship model (TINMAN); the programming languages are "C," DOS Assembler, and Fixit. Both standalone and LAN-based versions are available. The maximum number of current users is 100 for DOS; unlimited for UNIX. The maximum database size is unlimited; the largest database supported is 5 million books for UNIX. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC records. A toll-free number is available for customer support. Enhancements are issued approximately once every 18 months, for maintenance-paying customers only. The company reported 201 DOS-based sales in 1995. Its total installed base was 2,406 PC-based systems worldwide-200 in North America, 50 in Asia/Oceania, 12 in South America, 50 in Africa/Middle East, and 2,094 in Europe (48% special,. 34% academic, and 18% public libraries). The company declined to report annual sales for 1995. No information was provided as to percentage of sites using specific modules. For all products, the company had 25 staff devoted to software maintenance and development, 32 staff devoted to sales and marketing, and 52 to other customer support. Major software enhancements for 1995 included Tirian, serials issue, circulation, Windows OPAC, TRACS (software for document retrieval/storage). The company maintains offices in Europe and in the U.S.

[Contact: IME Systems, Inc., SO Congress Street, Suite 850, Boston, MA 02109-4006; (617) 722-0808; fax (617) 722-9893; Internet: sales@ime.co.uk.]

Inmagic, Inc. offers its software-only product known as INMAGIC Plus (for DOS) and INMAGIC DB/TextWorks (for Windows). It is a PC-based product which also runs on networks and on multi-user platforms. The IBM or compatible PCs run DOS and Windows operating systems. There is no set schedule for enhancement releases; they are available at no charge to clients with a support contract and for a fee for all others. Inmagic products are not capable of utilizing MARC bibliographic records. Two thousand software packages were sold (including both single-user and network versions) during 1995, with over 15,000 packages installed world-wide-70% in North America (80% were special libraries, and 10% each public and academic libraries). Revenue figures were not reported. The product is not sold by module; all sites are capable of using acquisitions, serials control, local cataloging, authority control, circulation, inventorying, online patron access catalog, ILL, materials booking, report generator, journal citation files, community information, electronic mail (to index messages), and GUI OPAC. In addition, the following interfaces were available at all sites: OCLC, RLIN, UTLAS, BiblioFile, LAN, and CD-ROM interfaces. The company reported that 8 staff were committed to software maintenance and development, 7 to sales and marketing, and 5 to other customer support. The company has authorized dealers in the United States, Canada, Australia, and Europe.

[Inmagic, Inc., 800 West Cummings Park, Woburn, MA 01801-6357; (800) 229-TEXT or (617) 938-4442; fax (617) 938-6393.]

Kelowna Software LTD offers its Library 4 Universal product as software-only, both standalone and in a LAN version. The major hardware platforms are Power Macintosh, IBM/PC, and Macintosh; the operating systems are Mac OS, Windows, Windows 95, and Windows NT. The DBMS is 4th Dimension; and Pascal and "C+" are the programming languages. The maximum number of concurrent users for the LAN version varies; but is estimated at up to 250. The database is limited to 16 million records per file. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. Enhancements are issued approximately twice annually. Toll-free customer support is provided. The company declined to provide the number of sales or installed systems, financial data, or staffing information. It reported that 98% of its customer base was school libraries, and 1% each were public and academic libraries. All of the sites had acquisitions, serials control, local cataloging, authority control, circulation, inventorying, online patron access catalog, materials booking, report generator, GUI OPAC, and GUI Technical Services; 80% had ILL; and 50% each had journal citation files and e-mail. All sites had a WLN, BiblioFile, and CD-ROM interface; 75% had a LAN interface; and 15% had remote database searching through a gateway. The major software enhancement during 1995 was platform independence allowing Windows and Macintosh computers to use the same database at the same time.

[Kelowna Software Ltd., #200 - 2000 Spall Road, Kelowna, BC V1Y SF6 Canada; (800) 667-3634 or (604) 860-4123; fax (604) 860-4240; Internet: bmesseng@awinc.com; Web Page: www.awinc.com/Library4.]

The Library Corporation offers its product, BiblioFile, as both bundled and software-only on IBM PC hardware platforms using DOS, Windows, and Windows NT operating systems; a proprietary, SQL, or Btrieve DBMS; and Delphi and "C++" as the programming languages. The system is available in both standalone and LAN versions. For the LAN version, there is no limit to the number of concurrent users; the maximum database size is 4 GB per single file. Some 30 sites discontinued use of the system during the year. At year's end, there were 6,200 installed and accepted systems-5,608 in North America, 439 in Asia/Oceania, 100 in Europe, 29 in South America, and 24 in Africa/Middle East (36% public, 24% school, 21% special, and 19% academic libraries). All sites were using report generator; 67% local cataloging; 50% OPAC; 18% authority control; 7% circulation; 6% inventorying; and 1% each acquisitions, journal citation files, community information, e-mail, GUI OPAC, and GUI technical services. All of the sites had a BiblioFile interface; 10% had OCLC interface; 8% a LAN interface; 2% each RLIN, WLN, and CD-ROM interfaces; and 1% each an UTLAS interface, remote database searching through gateway, Internet gateway, Z39.50 server, and Z39.50 client (multi-user and PC-based). The company reported gross sales revenue in the $10 to $15 million range, with an after-tax profit. There were 30 staff committed to software maintenance and development, 11 to sales and marketing, and 20 to other customer support. In 1995 major enhancements were made to its DOS-based PAC, circulation, and cataloging products. Several new companion databases and three new software products were also released: ITS for Windows, BiblioFile WebPAC, and NlightN.

[The Library Corporation, Research Park, Inwood, WV 25428-9733; (304) 229-0100; fax (304) 229-0295; Web Page: http://www.bibfile.com.]

Michigan State University offers the MicroMARC for Integrated Format product as software-only for IBM and compatible PCs using MS-DOS 5.0 or higher and a proprietary DBMS. (In 1995, the Micro-MARC for Integrated Format replaced MSU's previous product, MicroMARC:amc.) Standalone and LAN-based versions are available. The maximum number of concurrent users is limited by the LAN, not the software. The maximum database size is dependent upon the size of records, hardware, etc. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC records. The system was only released in Fall 1995 so no sales information is available. Sales were under $1 million; MSU is a non-profit institution.

[Michigan State University, Instructional Media Center, Marketing Division, Communication Arts Building, East Lansing, MI 48824; (517) 353- 9229; fax (517) 432-2650; Internet: msumarc@listserv.msu. edu.]

Nichols Advanced Technologies, Inc. offers two products, Athena and MOLLI. Athena is offered as software-only; MOLLI is offered both bundled and as software-only. Both Athena and MOLLI are delivered with several MARC record interfaces (including USMARC), as well as non-standard MARC records (such as BiblioFile). A toll-free number is provided for customer support.

Athena runs on PC-based (Intel) microcomputers using either Windows 3.11, Windows NT, or Windows 95 operating systems; a variety of DBMS, including FoxPro and ASCII files; and "C" as the programming language. The system is available in both standalone and LAN versions. The number of concurrent users supported under the LAN version is based upon network software; the maximum database size is unlimited-no upper bounds have been reached at this time. The system is capable of fully utilizing full-MARC bibliographic records. Enhancements are usually released yearly; customers who pay for technical support receive enhancements free of charge. There were 602 units sold in 1995. A total of 199 standalone/674 networked units were installed and accepted at year's end-all in North America (87% school libraries, 4% special, 4% academic, and 5% public libraries). All sites were using local cataloging, circulation, inventorying, report generator, and GUI OPAC; 75% were using the online patron access catalog; and 1% each were using acquisitions and serials control. All sites had OCLC, RLIN, UTLAS, WLN, and BiblioFile interfaces; and 75% had a LAN interface. There were two major releases of Athena in 1995: Athena/Mac, which allows Macs to search Athena; and Athena/Espanol, which adds Spanish searching screens.

MOLLI runs on PCs using the MS-DOS and MS-Windows operating systems, xBase as the DBMS, and "C" and compiled dBase as the programming languages. Both standalone and LAN versions are available. The number of concurrent users for the LAN version is based upon the network software; the maximum database size is approximately 100,000 records. Enhancements are usually released twice yearly at no charge to customers with technical support. There were 177 sales during 1995. The total number of installed and accepted units was 1,280 standalone/895 networked units-all in North America (84% school libraries, 7% special, 6% public, and 3% academic libraries). All sites were using the local cataloging, circulation, inventorying, and report generator; 40% online patron access catalog; and 1% each acquisitions and serials control. All sites had OCLC, RLIN, UTLAS, WLN, and BiblioFile interfaces; 40% had a LAN interface. The major software enhancement for 1995 was a new release.

The company's 1995 gross sales revenues were between $2.5 and $5 million with an after-tax profit. A staff of 8.5 FTE was committed to software maintenance and development of Athena, 3 to software maintenance and development of MOLLI, 9 (plus 25 independent sales representatives) to marketing and sales; and 7 to other customer support. In addition to LaCrosse, Nichols maintains an office in Edmonton.

[Nichols Advanced Technologies, Inc., 3452 Losey Blvd. South, LaCrosse, WI 54601; (800) 658-9453 or (608) 787- 8333; fax (608) 787-8337; Internet: sales@nicholsinc.com and support@nicholsinc.com.

On Point, Inc. offers a software-only package, known as TLC (Total Library Computerization). This is a new Windows product developed for single and multi-user applications. The operating system is Windows, the DBMS is FileMaker Pro, and the programming language is Claris FileMaker Pro 2.1. The company had a staff of .5 FTE committed to software maintenance and development, .25 FTE to sales and marketing; and .25 FTE to other customer support. The product is in beta testing, with general release anticipated for June 1996.

[On Point, Inc., 2606 36th Street, N.W., Washington, DC 20007-1419; (202) 338-8914; fax (202) 337-7107; Internet: onpointinc@aol.com.]

Ringgold Management Systems, Inc. offers Nonesuch Acquisitions, Nonesuch Catalog Control System, and Nonesuch Circulation as both bundled and software-only DOS/Windows-based products. All come as standalone and LAN versions. The maximum number of concurrent users for all three is unlimited by the product. Enhancements are issued annually as part of maintenance support. Nonesuch Acquisitions runs under the DOS/Windows operating system, written in BASIC. The maximum database size is 240,000 items. The system is capable of taking in full-MARC bibliographic records, but can not retain, edit, or output them without the catalog module. There were no sales in 1995. The total number of installations was 13 standalone/8 networked units-all North American (52% public and 48% academic libraries). All of the sites had the acquisitions module; 70% had an OCLC interface; 40% each had a CD-ROM interface and a LAN interface; 10% had a WLN interface; and 5% had a BiblioFile interface.

Nonesuch Catalog Control System runs under the Windows NT operating system, the SQL DBMS, and is written in BASIC/SQL. The system has an unlimited maximum database size; limitations result from the DBMS and the size of disks used. The system is capable of fully utilizing full-MARC bibliographic records. There was 1 software package sold during 1995, bringing the total number of installed and accepted standalone units to 4-all in North American (2 public and 2 academic libraries). All sites were using local cataloging, circulation, GUI OPAC, and GUI technical services; as well as remote database searching through a gateway, a LAN interface, and a CD-ROM interface; 3 had an OCLC interface; and 2 had a WLN interface. The major software enhancement for 1995 was more extensive global processes. Nonesuch Circulation uses the DOS, Windows, or UNIX operating systems, and the COBOL programming language. The maximum database size is 1 million records, without modification. The system is capable of taking in but not editing, retaining, or outputting full-MARC bibliographic records without the catalog module. There were no sales during 1995. There were 5 standalone installations in North America at the end of 1995 (40% public libraries and 60% academic libraries). All sites were using circulation, as well as a LAN interface; 80% each had an OCLC interface and CD-ROM interface; and 20% each had a WLN or BiblioFile interface.

In addition to its three PC-based products, Ringgold also has a multi-user product with the same Nonesuch name. It is offered as both bundled and software-only and runs on Intel hardware under the UNIX operating system. It is written in COBOL and BASIC. No systems were sold in 1995.

[Ringgold Management Systems, Inc., Box 368, Beaverton, OR 97075-0368; (503) 645-3502; fax (503) 690-6642; Internet: ralph@ringgold.com.]

SIRS, Inc. recently acquired the Mandarin Library Automation System which is offered both as bundled and software-only. Both standalone and LAN-based versions are available. The LAN version has no maximum number of concurrent users. Enhancements are issued annually (sometimes twice with minor updates) to Annual Service and Update Agreement customers. Toll-free customer service is provided. It runs on IBM compatible PCs with DOS (MAC-client is also available), a proprietary database, and is written in "C" and "C++." The software has a maximum database size of over 3. million records per each database and up to 100 databases. The system is capable of taking in, editing, retaining, and outputting full-MARC bibliographic records. During 1995, 225 sales were made-25 bundled and 200 software only. Total installations at the end of 1995 were 32 standalone/1,316 networked units-31 standalone/1,293 networked systems in North America, 1 standalone/ 17 networked systems in Europe, 3 networked in Asia/oceania, and 3 networked in Africa/the Middle East (90% school libraries, 4% each public and special, and 2% academic libraries). The company reported gross revenues for library automation product sales in the $1 to $2.5 million range, with an after-tax profit. All sites were using local cataloging, circulation, inventorying, online patron access catalog, and report generator modules; 20% had e-mail; 8% had community information; 2% had GUI OPAC; and 1% had interlibrary loan. (Acquisitions, serials control, authority control, materials booking, and GUI Technical Services were all in development.) All sites had OCLC, RLIN, UTLAS, WLN, BiblioFile, LAN, and CD-ROM interfaces; 7% had remote database searching through a gateway. (Z39.50 server and Z39.50 client were in development.) The company reported a staff of 12 committed to software development and maintenance, 60 to sales and marketing, and 9 to other customer support. The major enhancements in 1995 included rapid data entry, receipt printing, subject cross-references, MITINET/marc cataloging tool, Pegasus Mail, MARCOUT, collection age analysis tool. The company maintains offices in Florida and Montreal.

[SIRS, Inc., P.O. Box 2348, Boca Raton, FL 33427; (407) 994-0079 or (800) 232-SIRS; fax (407) 994-4704; Internet: mandarin@sirs.com; Web Page: http://ww.sirs.com.

VTLS, Inc. offers Micro-VTLS, as both bundled and software-only products for PCs using DOS, in both standalone and LAN versions. The DBMS is FoxPro, dBase III, or dBase IV; it is written in Clipper. There is no limit on either the number of concurrent users nor the size of a database. The only limitation is the size and speed of a customer's hardware. The system is capable of fully utilizing full-MARC records. General enhancement releases are usually quarterly; releases that include optional subsystems are usually annually. General releases are free of charge to all Micro-VTLS Maintenance Agreement clients. There is a toll-free number provided for customer support. The company completed 16 sales during 1995-7 bundled and 9 software only-bringing the total number of installed units to 129 (9 standalone/ 120 networked-6/75 in North America, 3/10 in Europe, 0/3 in South America, 0/1 in the Middle East, and 0/31 in Asia-50% were public, 35% special, and 15% academic libraries. All sites were using the authority control and OPAC modules; 90% were using circulation; 80% local cataloging; 15% community information (I&R); 10% ILL; 5% an Internet interface; and 2% each were using the acquisitions and serials control modules. A LAN interface was at 98% of the sites; 80% each had a Micro-VTLS dedicated OPAC interface and an interface to other systems from VTLS; 40% had an OCLC interface; 30% had a CD-ROM interface; 10% had a BiblioFile interface; and 15% had an Internet interface. Gross sales for 1995 were between $5 and $10 million (a figure which appears to include sales of its multi-user operating system product), with an after-tax profit reported. A staff of 3 was committed to software maintenance and development; 2 to sales and marketing (plus 5 in international sales, and 12 agents throughout the world), and 2 dedicated to Micro-VTLS with a 21 person general customer services staff. Major software enhancements during 1995 included the ability to print patron cards; the implementation of an Authority Merging Routine; and the addition of a routine to print spine labels. The company maintains offices in Europe as well as in the U.S. Agents are also located in Malaysia, Australia, Switzerland, Thailand, Kuwait, and the United Arab Emirates.

[VTLS, Inc., 1800 Kraft Drive, Blacksburg, VA 24060; (800) 468-8857 or (540) 231-3637; fax (540) 231-3648.]

Winnebago Software Company offers CIRC/CAT and CIRC/CAT for the Mac as both a bundled system and software-only that run on Intel-based PCs or the Power PC Macintosh. The operating systems are MS-DOS, Windows NT, Windows 95, and Windows (CIRC/CAT for the Mac uses MacOS System 7.0); the DBMS/programming language is Btrieve and object-oriented "C," primarily. CIRC/CAT is offered in both a standalone and LAN versions. The number of concurrent users is limited only by the license of the operating system; it is not limited logically. The maximum database size is 40 billion records. The system utilizes full-MARC records. Software enhancements are usually released annually. Toll-free customer support is provided. During 1995, the company sold 1,452 bundled and 2,178 software-only packages, bringing its installed system base to 14,730 standalone/7,900 networked units worldwide (60% school libraries, 20% public, 10% each academic and special libraries). All sites were using the report generator; 95% were using local cataloging, circulation, and inventorying modules; 85% were using the OPAC; 30% each were using serials control and ILL; 20% each were using e-mail, acquisitions, authority control, and journal citation files; and 10% were using materials booking. A LAN interface was at 80% of the sites; 40% had a BiblioFile interface; 30% each had an OCLC interface, UMI/Facts on File Interface, and remote database searching; 20% each had a CD-ROM interface; 10% each had an RLIN interface, a WLN interface, and an Internet gateway server; and 5% had an UTLAS interface. The company reported gross revenues of $25 to $30 million and an after-tax profit. Thirty staff were committed to software maintenance and development, 55 to marketing and sales, and 30 to other customer support. Major software enhancements for 1995 included total connectivity with seamless interface to informational databases.

[Winnebago Software Company, 357 East South, Caledonia, MN 55921; (507) 724-5411 or (800) 654-3002; fax (507) 724- 2301; Internet: sales@winnebago.com; Home Page: http://mnrnet.winnebago. com.]

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View Citation
Publication Year:1996
Type of Material:Article
Language English
Published in: Library Systems Newsletter
Publication Info:Volume 16 Number 05
Issue:May 1996
Page(s):33-42
Publisher:American Library Association
Place of Publication:Chicago, IL
Notes:Howard S. White, Editor-in-Chief; Richard W. Boss, Contributing Editor
Company: Brodart, Inc.
SIRS Mandarin, Inc.
Chancery Software, Ltd.
COMPanion Corporation
Data Trek, Inc.
EOS International
Eloquent Systems, Inc.
Follett Software Company
IME, Ltd.
Inmagic, Inc.
Kelowna Software, Ltd.
The Library Corporation
Michigan State University
Nichols Advanced Technologies Inc.
Ringgold Management Systems, Inc.
SIRS, Inc.
VTLS, Inc.
Winnebago Software Company
Mandarin Library Automation
Products: LePac
Precision One Integrated System
Precision One Media Minder
Macschool Library
Alexandria
Manager Series
Professional Series
The Eloquent Librarian
Alliance Plus
Catalog Plus
Circulation Plus
Information Navigator
T Series
Inmagic Plus
DB/TextWorks
Library 4
BiblioFile
MicroMARC for Integrated Format
Athena
MOLLI
Nonesuch Acquisitions
Nonesuch Catalog Control System
Nonesuch Circulation
Mandarin
MicroVTLS
CIRC/CAT
Subject: Library automation systems -- directories
Library automation systems -- PC based
Library automation systems -- Macintosh
ISSN:0277-0288
Record Number:5473
Last Update:2022-08-06 20:34:54
Date Created:0000-00-00 00:00:00
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