Syracuse, NY - January 18, 2006 – Responding to librarians' interest in providing RSS feeds to their patrons, Polaris Library Systems announced today that RSS capability is available in version 3.2 of the Polaris Integrated Library System. Polaris 3.2 has been in general release since June 2005 and is currently installed in almost two-thirds of Polaris ILS libraries. RSS (Really Simple Syndication) is a method of publishing links to content on Web sites.
Polaris updates its lists of new books, videos, sound recordings and large print hourly. If users subscribe to the feed from their library, when they go to their aggregator or reader to look at any new items the reader/aggregator software checks the Polaris feed to get the latest list. Users read the list in their reader/aggregator of choice. The list has links back into the Polaris PowerPAC that users can follow to see the individual titles or to see the entire list within PowerPAC.
"Maricopa County Library District (MCLD) has implemented an RSS pilot project to see how people will use and like this technology-based service," said Vicki Terbovich, librarian and technology officer at MCLD. "Right now we are using the built-in Polaris ILS capabilities to deliver RSS feeds on new materials, but our plan is to use RSS to distribute the library's newsletter. We want to respond to our technologically advanced customers' interest in using RSS technology to receive the latest library news. For us this is another access point into the Polaris portal and into the resources available to our customers."
Polaris PowerPAC is RSS 2.0 compliant. Processing for the RSS feed is related to Polaris PowerPAC's New Titles dashboard feature. Automatic processing for the New Titles Web part occurs nightly, and the dashboard links contain new titles for the past 31 days. On-order items are included. For the RSS feed, Polaris background processing updates the current New Titles list hourly.
"Polaris Library Systems is one of the first vendors to formally support RSS in our released product," said Candy Zemon, Senior Product Strategist. "Librarians are responding to what's going on in the general technology world by asking their ILS vendors to support new technologies. Our customers wanted the ability to deliver RSS feeds to their users and we responded by quickly adding this to our 3.2 release.
"RSS gives libraries the ability to reach out to their patrons and put information about new materials in front of them. Without navigating the library's Web site or needing to do a search, users get information on materials the library has received recently and can link directly back into the PAC for more details or to place a hold. It's a great way to increase the visibility of library resources," Zemon added.
In addition to MCLD, several other Polaris ILS libraries are also taking advantage of the RSS capability, including Henderson District Public Libraries (NV), Mid-Columbia Library System (WA), Brownsburg Public Library (IN), Clark County Public Library (OH) and Warren County Vicksburg Public Library System (MS).
About Polaris Library Systems
From its beginnings thirty years ago, Polaris Library Systems has served libraries with time-saving technology, from its first circulation system in the mid-1970s through its third-generation Polaris Integrated Library System. Polaris ILS facilitates all aspects of library operations by providing flexible workflow solutions packaged in a familiar Windows interface. In addition to its library automation systems, Polaris Library Systems offers workflow analysis, database enhancement, wireless access and network services to libraries of all types. For more information about Polaris Library Systems, visit www.polarislibrary.com.