MCHENRY, ILLINOIS -- January 2, 1995 -- Follett Software Company has released Sneak Previews Plus -- a new multimedia CD-ROM product designed to enhance the book acquisitions process within the school or library environment. Utilizing current multimedia technology including the Kodak Photo CD system, Sneak Previews Plus enables librarians to actually 'preview' books before ordering, thereby supplementing current review media. Book buyers not only read full-text reviews of newly published books from selected journals, but also view a full cover image, enhanced MARC record, text/illustration image and, if available, publisher-provided annotation, table of contents, index and author/illustrator information. Audio is also provided, when available, for author interviews and annotations.
"Sneak Previews Plus eliminates the guesswork in selecting books," says Charles (Chuck) R. Follett, Jr., president of Follett Software Company. "The ability to actually preview books before purchase results in more confident and accurate book selections by the librarian and a more vital, current and meaningful collection in the library. The program can also be effective in promoting collaborative planning between teachers and librarians, cultivating the transition to literature-based curriculum programs."
Sneak Previews Plus enables users to search for a record by author, title, subject (Library of Congress and/or Sears), illustrator, publisher series, Dewey Decimal Classification, or 'gallery' (multimedia entities only). The 'Search Window' contains a selection box that can be used to limit a search to fiction, nonfiction, or both (default), or to a particular interest level or 'all levels' (default). (Because reading abilities/levels and interests vary from one community to another, Follett Software Company suggests users look beyond specific grade groupings when selecting titles.) Sneak Previews Plus even enables users to complete and print a "want list" of desired titles.
Follett is using Photo CD technology from Eastman Kodak Company to include photographs in Sneak Previews Plus. The Kodak Photo CD system allows Sneak Previews Plus users to see photographic images of a book's cover and spine, along with illustrations and other images where appropriate.
Issued quarterly on subscription, each release will consist of two CD-ROMs - "Books for Young Readers" for the elementary school audience and "Books for Young Adults" for the secondary school audience. Subscriptions targeted toward each audience can be purchased separately for $169.00 each per year, or together at $299.00 per year.
Sneak Previews Plus minimum hardware requirements are: MS-DOS 386DX/25 MHz (486SX/25 MHz recommended) or compatible computer with 4MB RAM (8MB RAM recommended); 30MB (160MB recommended) hard drive with 5MB available storage; CD-ROM drive with sustained 150KB/second (300KB/second recommended) transfer rate; and SVGA (640 X 480) graphics adapter and monitor supporting 256 colors. Software requirements are: MS-DOS operating system version 5.0 or later, Microsoft Windows operating system version 3.1 or later, and MS-DOS CD-ROM Extensions (MSCDEX) version 2.1 or later (provided with your CD-ROM drive). Optional hardware are Microsoft mouse or 100% compatible pointing device; sound card supporting Microsoft Windows Media Control Interface (MCI); headphones or self-powered speakers; and a printer supported by Microsoft Windows.
For more information, customers may write Follett Software Company, 1391 Corporate Drive, McHenry, Illinois, 60050-7041, or call toll-free at (800) 323-3397.
A Follett Corporation Company based in McHenry, Illinois, Follett Software Company is the leading supplier of library microcomputer software in America, with over 23,000 installations of its flagship product, Circulation Plus.