(Chicago) -- Patrons find it easier to access and search library holdings and databases with ProPAC, the first graphical client based on the Z39.50 open systems protocol.
ProPAC, recently released by NOTIS Systems, Inc., is fully compliant with the Z39.50 standard for interoperability, and can access any Z39.50 compatible database server including NOTIS' InfoShare, RLIN and CitaDel databases, and OCLC FirstSearch and EPIC services. ProPAC also works as a front end to the NOTIS Library Management System (LMS) as well as the NOTIS database access systems and the NOTIS collection sharing system.
Based on Windows, ProPAC uses pull-down menus, icons, and graphic buttons for point and click functionality. With ProPAC, patrons quickly master search techniques and easily conduct in-depth investigations of library resources.
"ProPAC provides a simple way for patrons to interact with sophisticated information systems. Even if they are first-time system users, patrons can easily understand the icons and menus to access the library's holdings and databases. As a result, they can spend more time on their searches and less on learning how to search," says Jane Burke, president of NOTIS.
ProPAC is designed according to the client/server model that is the basis of true open systems. It is a client (software that accesses data) that can connect with any Z39.50 compatible server (software that manages data).
"Our library sites have repeatedly stated that modular software design fits their needs best. They want the flexibility to change portions of their systems as their needs grow and change. Systems like ProPAC are critical to the future of library automation because they ensure library staff of their ability to connect with new products and services for the years to come," says Burke.
ProPAC is available for a variety of different hardware environments including Apple Macintosh (System 7), MS-Windows for IBM compatible PCs (386SX or above), and X-Windows (for UNIX workstations).
NOTIS has guided all development according to the client/server system architecture since 1990. Other NOTIS products that were developed specifically to integrate with open systems design include InfoShare, a powerful UNIX database server, and the patron-initiated collection sharing system of PACLink and PACLoan.
NOTIS Systems, Inc., headquartered in Evanston, IL is a leading provider of integrated information systems for academic libraries. Its products provide automation for a wide range of library functions and are supported by a variety of customer service programs. NOTIS is a subsidiary of Ameritech Information Systems.