Book: “Cloud Computing in the Libraries”
Libraries need to have technology that aligns with what their current mission is.
Shift from print to electronic journals.
Still working it out for monographs.
Need to handle multiple formats.
Emphasis on digitizing local collections
Client-server to web-based computing
Cloud computing is a major trend in IT
Offers libraries opportunities to break out of individual silos of automation and engage in widely shared cooperative systems.
“Cloudwashing”: lots of claims to be “in the cloud” when products may not be any different from what they were.
Vendor-hosted library systems go back to at least 1994.
– web-based interfaces (as opposed to software on the desktop)
– externally hosted
– pricing: subscription or utility
– Highly abstracted computing model
– Provisioned on demand
– Scaled according to variable needs
– Elastic: consumption of resources can contract and expand according to demand
– Buy and maintain a server
– Buy and maintain software
– Electricity and data center
– Annual subscription with measured service or fixed fees
Can be cost-saving for both library and vendor.
“Multi-tenant software-as-a-service”: one copy of code base serves multiple sites; software functionality delivered entirely through web interfaces; upgrades and fixes deployed universally.
People can use Gmail and companies can use Salesforce.com with no loss of functionality or privacy. No upgrade interruptions.
Data as a service: Bibliographic knowledgebases or discovery indexes that serve many libraries.
Possible new ways of conceptualizing library automation:
– Fulfillment: circulation + ILL + DCB + e-commerce
– Resource management: cataloging + acquisitions + serials + ERM
– Customer relationship management: reference + circulation + ILL
– Enterprise resource planning: acquisitions + collection development
Libraries need to do more with their data.
Challenge: more integrated approach to information and service delivery:
– search the web site
– e-journal finding aids
– subject guides
– local digital collection
– Metasearch engines
– Discovery services (yet one more box on the web page)
Discovery from local to web-scale
Populating web-scale index with full text: a good front door to everything in your collection.
Ebsco, Summon, Ex Libris Prino, Worldcat
Libraries can move into a shared infrastructure model (multiple libraries, that is).
Consortia merging (Illinois Heartland), statewide (South Australia, much of Georgia) and national (New Zealand, Iceland, Chile, Denmark) systems, Cornell-Columbia system (2CUL).