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From your 1997-98 OCLC Users' Council Delegates:
   Benard Strong          Marcia Talley
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   ph: 202-287-9463       ph: 410-293-6905


> FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
>
> FOR MORE INFORMATION:
> Nita Dean +1-614-761-5002
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> OCLC SITESEARCH 4.0 SOFTWARE FIELD TESTS COMPLETED
>
> DUBLIN, Ohio, April 2, 1998--Six library systems have completed field
> tests of the OCLC SiteSearch 4.0 suite of software, paving the way for
> an April release that will offer libraries increased flexibility and
> expandability in integrating and managing electronic resources.
>
> Beta testing of the OCLC SiteSearch 4.0 software began in November
> with
> GALILEO, the Georgia Library Learning Online system, which continued
> testing through March.
>
> EDINA National Datacentre (located at Edinburgh University, in
> Scotland), SABINET Online (an online service provider for South Africa
> and southern African countries), University of Arizona, University of
> California at Berkeley, and University of South Florida conducted OCLC
> SiteSearch 4.0 field tests from January through March.
>
> "We've been very fortunate to have these prestigious institutions test
> OCLC SiteSearch 4.0 and assist us in its development," said Taylor
> Surface, manager, OCLC Distributed Systems.  "The testing process
> gives
> participating libraries an opportunity to use the new software and to
> provide suggestions on how we can improve it.  We have received
> excellent feedback from these institutions, and we hope that feedback
> will help us to meet or surpass the high expectations of our users."
>
> As part of the version 4.0 release, OCLC SiteSearch server components
> have been rewritten in the Java programming language, which will
> increase libraries' ability to extend the functionality of the OCLC
> SiteSearch software to create unique features specific to local needs.
> Additionally, local customization of WebZ interface functionality will
> be easier using Java.
>
> "Over the years, the developers of GALILEO have requested a number of
> changes, improvements and enhancements to the OCLC SiteSearch suite of
> software," said Brad Baxter, information analyst, Library Automation
> Group, University of Georgia.  "By adopting the Java language as a
> foundation, OCLC has developed a new version of OCLC SiteSearch that
> is
> meeting all of our requests and exceeding our expectations by giving
> us
> programmers almost complete control over the systems we develop."
>
> During the field test, OCLC sought feedback from the libraries on such
> topics as the design of the interface and ease of configuration and
> customization, as well as the ease of upgrading to the new Java
> architecture.
>
> "It's been fun learning and working in Java," said Janet Garey, head
> of
> UNIX servers and applications, Library Systems Office, University of
> California at Berkeley.  "The new software also opens up a lot of
> possibilities since it is so much more flexible and expandable.  It
> really feels like we can do whatever we need to now."
>
> SiteSearch 4.0 will offer expanded features such as enhanced
> multi-database searching and browsing, and the ability to search
> non-Z39.50 resources.
>
> "One of the best things about the new version--that comes right out of
> the box--is the cross-database search capabilities," said Ms. Garey.
> "It took very little effort for us to set up a group of databases to
> search in one pass.  I think the library users will like this feature
> a
> lot."
>
> The OCLC SiteSearch 4.0 suite of software is scheduled to be released
> in
> late April.
>
> A prototype of the new interface can be viewed
> at<http://cypress.dev.oclc.org:19500>.
> For more information on the OCLC SiteSearch suite of software, visit
> the
> OCLC SiteSearch Web site <http://purl.oclc.org/SiteSearch/>.
>
> Developed in 1992 by the OCLC Office of Research and Special Projects,
> the OCLC SiteSearch suite of software helps libraries integrate and
> manage their electronic library collections.  More than 250 libraries
> use OCLC SiteSearch to build electronic collections, offer access to
> global and local resources, and extend access to information when and
> where their users need it.
>
> With the OCLC SiteSearch suite, users view library catalogs, local and
> remote reference databases, image collections, full-text resources and
> more using one interface and one search process from users'
> desktops--whether in the library, home or office.  OCLC SiteSearch
> provides libraries with features such as Web access to Z39.50
> resources,
> the ability to maintain the state of a user's interaction with
> resources, and the capability to create unique local databases.
>
> OCLC Online Computer Library Center is a nonprofit, membership,
> computer
> library service and research organization whose computer network and
> services link more 26,000 libraries in 64 countries and
> territories <http://www.oclc.org/>.        (RJM)
>
> -30-