Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Cibbarelli's Surveys: User Ratings of Information Navigator Software

Magazine article Computers in Libraries

Cibbarelli's Surveys: User Ratings of Information Navigator Software

Article excerpt

Sites using IME's Information Navigator software were asked to rate Information Navigator on a variety of qualities using a scale of 1 to 10. The results are in the table below. [TABULAR DATA OMITTED]

Information Navigator is an integrated online library system software designed to manage acquisitions, online catalogs, batch catalogs, cataloging, circulation, keyword indexes, interlibrary loans, serials, and thesaurus. It is fully MARC-compatible and features advanced Boolean and fulltext searching capabilities.

The software is available in both DOS and UNIX versions. Its open-system architecture permits flexible, networked configurations in either operating environment. It is one of the few packages that can be installed in a PC-based system and expanded to a larger UNIX-based system as a library's needs increase.

IME: Worldwide Leader

IME's product literature indicates this is the most installed library management system in the world. Frank Bridges in his article, "The Automated System Marketplace 1992" (Library Journal, April 1, 1992) attests to this fact. "Worldwide for all years, the leaders are IME ... with 1,350 ... systems. The U.S.-only figures for all years changes things very little, except that IME (fifty-one systems) is bumped completely out of the standings."

Furthermore, IME is shown as number one in installations worldwide (with 289 systems) in academic libraries, second in installations worldwide (with 240 systems) in public libraries. From the viewpoint of the size of the systems, IME has the most installations of any product on small systems (1-16 terminals), with 1,141 installations, as well as on midsized systems (17-64 terminals), with 208 installations. The product is not installed on larger systems.

To ease retrospective conversion efforts, IME has developed system interfaces to OCLC, RLIN, Biblio-File, Marcive, LaserQuest, LIBRIS, PICA, BLAISE, and SABINET.

Information Navigator was originally developed in 1984 by Information Management & Engineering Systems, Inc. (IME). This is a London-based company with U.S. offices in Dedham, MA. The system was originally introduced to the market as TinLIB, and the underlying DBMS was marketed as TinMAN.

These original names are still used for the product in Europe, but in North America, it is known as Information Navigator. Dr. Peter Koerr is technical director of the product. He formerly worked with the Library of Congress and also with the British National Library developing the Merlin system.

This survey was mailed by IME to all fifty-three Information Navigator sites in the United States. Eighteen sites responded to the survey. There are a total of 1,500 installed sites as reported in IME's most recent update to the Directory of Library Automation: Software, Systems, and Services (Learned Information, Inc., 1992).

User Sites

Maryland General Assembly (Annapolis, MD) installed Information Navigator in June 1991 for a catalog of about 20,000 titles. It plans to implement acquisitions and circulation as time permits, and eventually will add the serials module.

The Institute for Psychoanalysis has had the product for only a few months and primarily uses the cataloging module as it works through retrospective conversion of its catalog.

The New York Chiropractic College (Seneca Falls, NY) uses Information Navigator as a standalone card catalog. In January 1993 it plans to use it for serials and circulation. It is waiting on a newly developed media template for circulation to manage its collection of videos, x-rays, slides, and audiocassettes. …

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