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Ex Libris Primo @Vanderbilt University. Working toward a new discovery and delivery platform. Marshall Breeding Director for Innovative Technology and Research Vanderbilt University Library http://staffweb.library.vanderbilt.edu/breeding. Need for Improvement.

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Ex Libris Primo @Vanderbilt University

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ex libris primo @vanderbilt university

Ex Libris Primo @Vanderbilt University

Working toward a new discovery and delivery platform

Marshall Breeding

Director for Innovative Technology and Research

Vanderbilt University Library


need for improvement
Need for Improvement
  • General awareness that we need to make significant improvements in our Web presence.
  • Participation in LibQual+ indicated the library’s service quality to be excellent in most areas
  • Some indicators and many comments that our online catalog and Web site needed improvement
current environment
Current Environment
  • SirsiDynix Unicorn
    • iLink catalog
    • Highly customized
  • SFX –
    • Initial beta test participant
    • Purchased product later
problems with the status quo
Problems with the Status Quo
  • A look and feel that may not meet the expectations of the current generation of Web-savvy users.
  • Our current environment requires users to interact with many different interfaces, and search many different resources.
  • Overly complex for some users
  • Not always intuitive
  • Users have to go to different places to find different kinds of information on a given topic: Acorn for books, “Articles and Databases” page for articles.
what is primo
What is Primo?
  • Not just a replacement for the OPAC. A research environment with a broader scope, more current search-and-retrieval technologies, with an interface more in step with other Web destinations. Incorporates “Web 2.0” concepts.
  • A new information discovery and delivery tool created by Ex Libris.
  • An environment for the discovery of information resources provided by the library.
  • Provides a mechanism for providing access options for the materials and services within different types of collections including electronic, digital, and print materials. (GetIt!)
  • Works toward an environment that gives equal footing to print and digital resources
library trends
Library Trends
  • Primo is consistent with the trend among libraries to break out of the current mold of library catalogs and offer new interfaces better suited to the expectations of library users.
  • Decoupling of the front-end interface from the back-end library automation system.
  • Widespread dissatisfaction with most of the current OPACs. Many efforts toward next-generation catalogs and interfaces.
possible paths
Possible paths
  • Re-work customizations of iLink
  • Wait for next generation catalog for Unicorn
  • Endeca
    • Beyond our resources
dissatisfaction with metasearch offerings
Dissatisfaction with MetaSearch offerings
  • Recent experience with MetaLib
  • Too slow
  • Too Complex
  • Presentation and ranking based on shallow result sets
  • Fundamental flaw in “distributed query” federated search
  • The vision of Primo addressed many of the concerns that we had with our current environment and with the inherent problems in the current product offerings
  • Break down the silos between
    • Print and Digital
    • Local and Remote
  • Consolidated search and information delivery environment
  • More like the interfaces library users see everywhere else on the Web.
shift in direction
Shift in direction
  • New strategic initiatives already underway when Primo opportunity emerged
  • Digital library initiative
  • Priorities already set on things that were urgent to accomplish
  • Was Primo more important than these?
primo partnership process
Primo partnership process
  • Decision to become a development partner with Ex Libris for Primo had to be a library-wide process, not based on the opinion of any single individual.
  • Competition very high for resources (staff)
  • Need for broad-based library buy-in, acceptance of decision.
  • Need to take a bold step to improve our Web environment
partnership commitment
Partnership commitment
  • As a new product, the decision to devote significant library resources involves a higher level of risk than purchasing an existing product.
  • Engagement means full commitment – strong mutual interest to make the product work.
development focus
Development focus
  • MARCXML pipe
    • Export Unicorn data
    • Enhanced with Authority data
    • Mapping rules
  • Dublin Core
    • Initial test involves data from the Vanderbilt Television News Archive
  • Review and input on FRBR implementation
  • Opportunity to give input on interface
relationship to acorn unicorn ils
Relationship to Acorn (Unicorn ILS)
  • The native version of Unicorn iLink (WebCat) will continue to be available.
  • Data from Unicorn is replicated in Primo and kept up-to-date. All data retained and maintained in Unicorn.
  • Unicorn continues to be the mechanism for presenting library services related to the physical collection: holds, renewals, annex requests, faculty book delivery.
  • An additional item display in Unicorn/iLink (WebCat) will be created specifically for Primo that is more consistent with the look and feel of Primo.
  • Acorn is but one content component of Primo.
vu ex libris partnership
VU – Ex Libris partnership
  • Multiple visits to VU by Ex Libris Staff
  • Weekly conference calls
  • Detailed Project plan
  • Ongoing dialog – give and take
  • Feb 2006 -- Initial conversations with Oren
  • Mar 2006 – First on-site demo of Primo at VU
  • Apr 2006 – Decision to partner with Ex Libris for Primo
  • May 15 2006 – Kick-off meeting w/ Ex Libris
  • Oct 31 2006 – Project plan complete
  • Dec 2006 – Hardware delivered and installed
  • Jan 1007 – Full data extracts
  • Feb 2007 – Version 1.0 of software installed
  • Aug 2007 – Primo available to all VU staff for review and testing
primo partnership and implementation resources
Primo Partnership and Implementation Resources
  • Significant involvement by 40+ library staff
  • Multiple committees and workgroups
    • Digital Library Steering Committee
    • Unicorn MARCXML Pipe
    • Dublin Core / TVNEWS Pipe
    • Normalization Team
    • GetIt team
    • Authentication
    • MetaLib
    • 2 Testing Teams
  • Multiple on-site visits by Ex Libris staff
  • Weekly calls to Israel
current status
Current status
  • Version 1.0 software installed
  • Staging server / Production Server
  • Unicorn and TV News data loaded
  • Service Patches installed
  • Last remaining problems close to resolution
  • Staff rollout within a week
  • Public review shortly thereafter
  • Production: soft deployment in Fall 2007
initial impressions
Initial impressions
  • Continues to show great promise
  • Positive reaction to seeing VU’s own data in Primo
  • Able to see implications of the work and decisions made throughout the process
    • Results display
    • Record presentation
    • De-duping / FRBR
  • Project continues to be on track
  • Results commensurate with the investment
testing and evaluation
Testing and Evaluation
  • Development partnership working toward public review and production implementation
    • Internal beta where staff evaluate VU implementation of Primo – any day now
    • Public beta for library users – a week or so later
    • Production use of Primo as primary library interface in the Fall
future expectations for primo at vu
Future Expectations for Primo at VU
  • Incorporate additional local content
    • TV News is just the first digital collection that could benefit from greater exposure
    • Subscription content. Get beyond the limitations of the current metasearch model.
  • Integration of Primo with Blackboard courseware system