Magazine article Information Today

ISI and IBM Begin Joint Study to Develop a Prototype Electronic Library System

Magazine article Information Today

ISI and IBM Begin Joint Study to Develop a Prototype Electronic Library System

Article excerpt

The Institute for Scientific Information (ISI) and International Business Machines (IBM) Corporation are undertaking a joint study to develop a prototype electronic document storage management and distribution system for ISI's Electronic Library project.

The objective of this project is to allow publishers and users of scholarly information to test the many variables relating to the electronic distribution of information. Initially, the prototype will provide users with desktop access for their own localarea-network (LAN) environments to the bibliographic data, abstracts, table of contents, full-text, and full images of the 1350 scientific journals contained in the Life Sciences edition of ISI's Current Contents. This collaborative project will also serve to evaluate new technologies for use in future digital library systems.

Using IBM's modular, client/server solution, ISI's subscribers would have direct local access to customized selections of information. Network connections between local "library servers" and ISI's "enterprise server" would permit subscribers to easily order copies of information not contained in their local collections and enable ISI to deliver updates to local collections and provide for account control and customer usage information.

"This electronic project has been developed in response to the demands from the marketplace," said William Schlegel, chief executive officer, ISI. "We have been working on this project for almost two years, and have been in ongoing discussions with key players in the publishing industry, including primary publishers and representatives from both corporate and academic libraries."

"The first major milestone," continued Schlegel, "is today's choice of IBM as a technology partner. We are confident that its expertise in systems development will enable us to launch the electronic library prototype within a year. …

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