Ameritech recently extended the life of its aging NOTIS product, apparently because libraries with the system continue to find it adequate and are not rushing to purchase Ameritech's Horizon or any other automated library system as a replacement. The few that have replaced their NOTIS systems over the past year have migrated to six different vendors: Ameritech (for Horizon), DRA, Endeavor, Innovative Interfaces, Sirsi, and VTLS.
In the highly fragmented academic research library market only Endeavor has signed more than four contracts in the past year, and those were not all former NOTIS customers. Endeavor's new academic research library clients include Auburn, Guelph and Waterloo, Northwestern, Pennsylvania, and Syracuse.
Eventually the NOTIS product will be phased out. A probable migration route will be to a system utilizing client/ server technology and featuring a graphical user interface. Explanations for the slow move away from NOTIS include: (1) many of the new client/server products are still incomplete, therefore, it makes sense to wait a year or two; (2) all of the new products involve the use of PCs as remote peripherals, therefore, libraries need to invest in them first; and (3) major upgrades in the library and campus networks are needed before client/server architecture-the architecture of the new systems-can be effectively used, therefore, libraries and their campuses need to make those investments first.
The earliest time for the general availability of relatively complete client/server products is probably mid-1998. It will be even longer before Web-based user interfaces are available for all modules. The best estimate now is late 1999.