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Re: [Fwd: Re: [Fwd: Re: [school-discuss] library conversion to opensource]]
I think there's two packages that are really worth looking at: the
previously mentioned Koha <http://www.koha.org> and OpenBiblio
<http://obiblio.sourceforge.net/>. (FYI, <http://oss4lib.org/projects/>
lists out many library-related free software projects.)
I have heard Koha is good library automation software.
The big difference between the two are the languages they're written in.
Koha is in Perl and OpenBiblio is in PHP. Despite my preference for PHP,
I think Koha is a stronger product. Koha seems a bit more mature and I
really like the architecture of it.
Koha allows you to easily set up library branches. While that was
designed to be a typical library branch, there's no reason why a "branch"
couldn't be a completely different library. This opens up the possibility
of a school district running a Koha server at the high school, and then
making the middle and elementary schools as branches. Or -- perhaps even
better -- to link in the town's library as a branch. (Sadly most town
libraries in my neck of the woods (northern New England) have pitiful tech
resources compared to the schools (not to imply that the schools are rich in
The network link between a branch and the main library database can be
as simple as a dial-up link -- there's no need to run serious equipment at
the actual branch location.
And both Koha and OpenBiblio are web-based, which gives a multi-platform
spin and means no client software to install/support.
How many thousands of Iraqis do we have to kill and torture before we
figure out they do not want us in their country? US troops home now!