ATHENS, OH - March 27, 2008 - LibLime, the leader in open-source solutions for libraries announced today that the Independently Cooperating Ashtabula Network (ICAN) has selected Koha ZOOM for their next integrated library system (ILS) and union catalog.
ICAN is a public library consortium in Ashtabula County, Ohio. The consortium's six public libraries have approximately 235,000 items in their combined collections and an annual circulation of about 705,000.
ICAN has selected the hosted Koha ZOOM solution, wherein the installation will be hosted at one of LibLime's carrier-class data centers. LibLime will be providing ICAN with software installation, data migration, and ongoing support services.
"Andover, Conneaut, Harbor Topky, Henderson, Kingsville and Rock Creek Public Libraries have been considering and reviewing open source automation systems since January 2005," said the consortium in a joint statement. "In 2007, we began to review all our fiscal responsibilities more thoroughly. That review showed that changes in technology have created better and less expensive methods to serve library patrons. Also, because the technology utilized currently is being phased out, in reviewing our options, we decided Koha offered a better collaborative automation system."
LibLime's open-source business model was a major consideration for ICAN when they chose Koha and LibLime for support. "We are so excited about all the benefits of open source. Not only will it save us substantially compared to our current system for four of the libraries, but the benefits of customizing the software to do exactly what we want far outweighs the traditional proprietary ILS vendors," says Kathleen L. Jozwiak, Director of the Henderson Memorial Public Library.
"We will get what we pay for this time unlike the proprietary vendor who may or may not implement a requested change," Kathleen continues. "With open source, the software is free. Maintenance support with a company like LibLime is cost-effective, and enhancements can be made quickly to meet staff and patron needs more efficiently."
Koha offers ICAN significant improvements over their current system on both the patron and staff interfaces: "We are excited about the patron interface which allows for Internet-style searching like Google and Amazon.com. Patrons will love the ease of searching and requesting materials. The ease of moving between screens for check-out, requests, etc., will make the staff's job easier. Staff have been emphatic at seeing this as a vast improvement over our current ILS systems."
The move to Koha will help facilitate greater collaboration and cooperation between consortial members: "The bond between several of the libraries in Ashtabula County has been greatly strengthened," their joint statement continues. "That spirit of collaboration and cooperation has resulted in a plan to restructure the cooperative effort in such a manner so that each library will play an equal role. Therefore, the move to the Koha open-source automaton system will enhance this new, cooperative organization which stems from a spirit of unity. We are confident that the changes being considered will better serve library patrons."
ICAN is the sixth US consortium to select LibLime's Koha ZOOM in the last six months.
About ICAN (Independently Cooperating Ashtabula Network)
Independently Cooperating Ashtabula Network (ICAN) includes the following libraries in Ashtabula County: Andover, Conneaut, Harbor Topky, Henderson, Kingsville and Rock Creek Public Libraries.
Ashtabula County is the northeastern most county in the state of Ohio. It is the largest county in area in the state - 1,368 square miles. It is very rural and in the state's snowbelt. The county population is 102,000. The county has sixteen covered bridges with several vineyards and wineries. Combined, the libraries serve over 37,000 borrowers in the county.
About Koha ZOOM
Koha ZOOM is the next-generation release of the award-winning Koha open-source integrated library system. Notably, it includes a powerful search engine based on Zebra, a high-performance indexing and retrieval engine. Koha ZOOM's search engine can read structured records in practically any input format (e.g., email, XML, MARC) and allows access to them through exact boolean search expressions and relevance-ranked free-text queries. It supports large databases (more than ten gigabytes of data, tens of millions of records) as well as incremental, safe database updates on live systems.
To try out Koha ZOOM for yourself, visit LibLime's demos:
LibLime is the global leader in open-source solutions for libraries, with a mission to make open source accessible to libraries. Rather than sell software licenses for static, hard-to-customize software products, LibLime educates libraries about the benefits of open source, enabling them to make choices about how best to provide their communities and staff with better technology services. LibLime then facilitates implementation of open-source in libraries by providing outstanding development, customization, support and training solutions--solutions tailored to each library's needs. For more information, see http://liblime.com.