Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Open Minds, Open Books, Open Source

From Inside Higher Ed | Open Minds, Open Books, Open Source
...some libraries, fed up with software that doesn’t fully meet their needs, have decided to take matters, figuratively, into their own hands. With a bit of grant money and some eager developers, institutions have begun creating their own open-source solutions that are fully customizable, free for others to use and compatible with existing systems. The result has been a whole crop of projects that, when combined, could serve as a fully integrated, end-to-end open-source solution for academic libraries, covering the interface, search mechanism, database system, citations and even course management.

Meanwhile, the increasing availability of open-source software has nudged some libraries to reconsider the role of their in-house technology gurus, and to wonder whether it would make more long-term financial sense to hire more developers than to continue paying for products over which they have limited control.

“If we truly want to remain relevant, it’s what we have to do,” said Susan Gibbons, an associate dean in the University of Rochester library system.

The code4lib conference, for example, has seen its popularity grow from some 75 attendees in 2006 to a cap of 200 this year, according to Andrew Nagy, who is on the technology management staff at Villanova University’s library....

So what OSS products are your Oklahoma libraries working on?

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