Perhaps there's excessive reliance on one vendor. SoftQuad have the
monopoly, why should they change. In terms of customers, I'm sure the EAD
contingent is a drop in the bucket. Perhaps what the market needs to get
going is competition and encouragement of some of the other vendors such as
WordPerfect and Word/Near&Far. RLG is only encouraging this reliance by
pushing the SQ line, when they, as well as SAA and LC should be urging
diversification. Perhaps then the prices for some of this software would
drop and it would be more likely to become something browsers can read like
Netscape or Explorer.

On the subject of delivery, has anyone done a survey of what browsers users
are using, and whether users of larger research collections might be more
sophisticated than those of smaller (town, local, regional) historical
societies and libraries. The reason I'm asking is that I'm part of a
presentation at LOAC (Lake Ontario Archives Conference) and where people
from these smaller institutions will be encouraged (and forewarned) to
embrace the EAD. What if they come in using AOL / Prodigy / Compuserve of
whatever flavor (where they can't install these plugins) because it's
"easier" to use. Aren't we excluding them. Are they really going to be
bothered to change providers, upgrade their systems, buy plugins...? I'm
not so sure.

Thoughts anyone?


Der Buchbinder als Architekt des Buches baut eine
Fassade seiner Zeit. Edwin Redslob

Peter Verheyen, Conservation Librarian
Syracuse University Library
Syracuse, NY 13244
mailto:[log in to unmask]