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Affordability, Democracy, Transparency, Freedom Open Source ILS Rana Muhammad Iqbal MIT, MLS (Punjab) Library Specialist Planning Commission Islamabad.

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Presentation on theme: "Affordability, Democracy, Transparency, Freedom Open Source ILS Rana Muhammad Iqbal MIT, MLS (Punjab) Library Specialist Planning Commission Islamabad."— Presentation transcript:

1 Affordability, Democracy, Transparency, Freedom Open Source ILS Rana Muhammad Iqbal MIT, MLS (Punjab) Library Specialist Planning Commission Islamabad

2 Software available FREE with source code under GPL license to use, change, improve and redistribute it modified or unmodified. Open source software can be used freely without having to pay license fees to its developers. Contrasts with the commercial model of software distribution in which the source code remains the developer's closely guarded private property. What is Open Source Software (OSS)?

3 Why would anybody work on something for free? The open source movement is a worldwide effort to promote an open style of software development more aligned with the accepted intellectual style of science than the proprietary modes of invention that have been characteristic of modern business. Both open source software & open access to research represent innovative responses to the particular restrictions placed on the sharing and exchange of software code & research publications, respectively, imposed by current intellectual property economics. Idea is to keep the SW advances openly available for everyone to use, understand, and improve, as in 1960-70 engineers did. based on innovating, sharing, collaborating, community involvement, freedom, and winning together. Philosophy of OSS

4 The Open Source Landscape Open source software has proved to be a viable alternative to the proprietary software products offered by Microsoft and other companies. The leading instance of open source software is the operating system Linux, which is an option when ordering IBM and Dell computers, and is used to run the large server farms maintained by Google and eBay. Linux alone challenges fortress Microsoft, and is proving to be the software hope for developing nations. Can be downloaded without charge, with a large global community of supporters who gather around Web sites such as, which provides ready access to over 60,000 open source software projects. The unacknowledged convergence of open source, open access, and open science by John Willinsky, First Monday, volume 10, number 8 (August 2005), URL:

5 The Open Source Web Server

6 The Apache Server code, for instance, had 80,000 lines of code with about 400 people contributing.. The major role is of its global users' community. Support of IDAs (like UN), Govts (all from USA to Pakistan), Charities (e.g. A. W. Mellon Foundation, Max Bell Foundation) R&D bodies and Academics (e.g. FAST) to bridge the digital divide and share the benefits of ICTs with those who can't afford otherwise. Pay-for-Support companies and service providers of OSS are using all state-of-the-art technologies and processes to keep OSS products competitive against their commercial competitors. Commercial Companies & venders using OSS technologies to support their off-the-shelf/ proprietary software, for instance Virtua uses LINUX server and Vital DR leverages the benefits of open-source solutions such as Apache, MySQL and FEDORA. OSS Sustainability

7 OSS and Libraries OSS model is culturally quite similar to the values embodied in libraries Bretthauer, 2001). Libraries and open source software are a natural fit. (Frumkin, 2002). OSS is solving problems for libraries of all types and is helping to get work done for people of all technical abilities (Bisson, 2007). OSS offers cheap alternatives to expensive commercialized solutions (Altman, 2001; Cervon, 2003; Muir: Wan, 2007). Rajni (2003) considered, Free and open Source Software a useful and significant tool that can be helpful to solve many problems faced by the people of developing countries. The report identified low cost, anti- piracy campaign, security and technological independence as factors behind the expansion of FLOSS in the developing world. by standing up for open source within our libraries we stand up for libraries as evolving organizations ready for the challenges of the future (Jaffe and Careaga, 2007)

8 Unanticipated Efforts: A library may find that it needs to do a great deal more work than anticipated to adapt the software exactly to the local needs. Lack of Coordination:The decentralized development of open source software means that progress can be chaotic and there may be delays in addressing bugs. Inadequate Technical Support: Documentation tends to be limited and aimed at developers. There usually is limited technical support, especially for users of the software. Risk of discontinuation: Development or support may discontinue. The same risk exists with commercial options. Pay-for-Support provides solution to most of the problems OSS: Weaknesses

9 Ability to fit local needs: Availability of the source code means that you can modify and enhance the software to more closely fit your own needs. No restrictions on use: no restrictions on how the software is used and no invoices for each user license. Low cost: no charge for the software itself. If other libraries share their efforts, each users cost is reduced. Pay only for needed support or any additional products & services if required. Even then huge savings than commercial SW. Innovation: with open source code, users keep-up innovating, improving which means often much faster development cycle when compared to proprietary software OSS Strengths

10 User-driven: Traditional vendors focus on providing functionality meeting needs of the majority of their customers.In contrast, OSS features emerge from the community of users.This makes OSS development user- driven: you decide what features are important and deserve attention rather than a vendor. Collaboration:vibrant local, national and global user groups collaborate in creativity, development and trouble shooting. Transfer of Technical Know-How: Being active member and part of OSS community, your team members will learn the minimum required know-how of SW & technologies in use. OSS Strengths..

11 Reliability: OSS is peer-reviewed software, exposed to extreme scrutiny, with problems being found and fixed instead of being kept secret until the wrong person discovers. So the code base is more reliable than closed, proprietary software. Mature open- source code is as bulletproof as software ever gets. OSS evolves at astonishing speed. People improve it, people adapt it, people fix bugs. Security: Proprietary software, with 'closed' source code, support and future development rely solely on the resources of a single vendor. If the vendor goes down, so does your product support. In contrast, OSS rely on stable code bases developed and supported by many providers worldwide. As a result, libraries using OSS have more support options than those using proprietary software. OSS Strengths...

12 Dramatically reduces the potential of supplier lock–in which solves "a huge problem of potential opportunism" and reduces the chances of ending up in "a dependent relationship." Stallman identifies four open source freedoms ………..: the freedom to run the program for any purpose, to study how it works, to redistribute copies, to change and improve the program and redistribute those improvements (Weber, 2004, p. 48) Everyone wins: Initiators, Adopters, Contributors, Govts, Public & Private Institutions, Communities OSS Strengths...

13 Koha Avanti MicroLCS OpenBiblio Emilda PhpMyLibrary Evergreen PMB FireFly PYTHEAS GNUTeca WEBLIS Open Source Integrated Library Systems

14 300+ libraries worldwide Horowhenua Library Trust Nelsonville Public Library – Athens Country, OH Crawford County Federated Library System, 10 Libs Howard County, MD: Service area population: 266300 4.7 m. circulation transactions in 2006 1 million volumes collection Central Kansas Library System Santa CruzPublic Library: 9 branches, 2 million volume Near East University Library: 1.5 million volumes Delhi Public Library: 2.0 million volumes KOHA: The First Open Source ILS

15 KOHA VS Commercial ILS Source:

16 KOHA Features Source: A full featured modern integrated library software (ILS). OS independent any operating system. Linux, Unix Mac, Windows Web based. Web-based Interfaces. We can integrate with website. Full MARC21 and UNIMARC support for professional cataloguing. Multilingual and multi-user support Library-Standards-Compliant. Industrial standards & protocols. Z39.50 server. Online reservation. Full catalogue, circulation, acquisitions, libreary stock management. Web based OPAC, public to search the catalogue. Major industry-standard database type (text, RDBMS),SQL, MySQL. Serial management module. Print your barcode. Export and import of Marc records, ISO2709 Turnkey Open Source ILS Koha has almost all the feature of commercial software and its users are its owners.

17 KOHA OPAC Features Source: Relevance ranking Spell-checking Refining original queries Support for popular query operators Flexible default query processing In-line query limiters Sort flexibility Faceting Advanced search Easily customized search-result pages Online suggestions Search logging and reports Well-rounded administrative interface tagging, comments, recommendations display/hide item status display record images wildcard searching: internal and right- truncation searching using UTF-8 characters Basic and Advance searching User login and Password Online Account checking Self Reserve Self Renew Online Purchase Suggestions Fine Checking Virtual shelf Book Bag Integration with google scholar Amazon content Book review Title image Multi-branch catalog Marc record export Multilingual searching Reading History Personal information update Fresh Arrivals checking

18 Open Source in Pak libraries Free SW CDS-ISIS: provided the foundation to library automation in Pakistan Zebra Server, Yaz Client and MarcEdit: Out of 520 only 15 libraries are using Zebra Server and most of the libraries are using off-the-shelf solutions for their connection to the LOC gateway. Eleven out of the total fifteen worldwide Zebra based OPACs are from Pakistan, and the ten OPACs were implemented along with staff training by PakLAG volunteers with out charging a single penny from the respective organizations. Koha ILS: Exploration Initiated UMT, further Explored NRSP, joined IIU and PakLAG. PakLAG KOHA: Six Languages Virtual Key Boards, Urdu Marc Export facility, Printing of multilingual spines, book card, membership cards, catalog cards etc. PakLAG among Pay-for support Companies. First in south Asia PakLAG Koha: Adopted by Allama Iqbal Open University Islamabad HITEC University Wah Cantt. Health Services Academy Islamabad.

19 Issues, Challenges, opportunities Source: Conceptual Risk Factor Financial Social/Cultural … Organizational Culture Technological/Technical Level of support available Documentation Training Human resource development Open source popularity Trend change/financial constraints/ Dissatisfaction with existing systems

20 ILS user Trends Source: Koha -- LibLime (241 libraries, 306 facilities in lib-web-cats) Public libraries: 114 Academic libraries: 36 School libraries: 28 0 libraries have migrated away from this system. VTLS, Inc. offers the following Integrated Library Systems: Virtua (151 libraries, 264 facilities in lib-web-cats) Public libraries: 24 Academic libraries: 74 School libraries: 2 14 libraries have migrated away from this system. VTLS (8 libraries, 9 facilities in lib-web-cats) Public libraries: 1 Academic libraries: 7 School libraries: 0 361 libraries have migrated away from this system.170 361

21 Thank you

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