Agenda for HOLLIS Liaisons Meeting #64
1. Announcements: T. Robinson
1. Announcements: T. Robinson
Notes from the March Meeting
OSPR will update the SH database once a month with new headings or changes to existing headings. An update schedule for SH will appear in the HOLLIS newsletter and electronic mail (EMS). If you have questions or comments regarding the SH database, please contact Robin Wendler or Julie Wetherill at OSPR (495-3724).
COPY command now available. The new COPY command, which enables authorized operators to add a copy of a subject authority record from the SH database to the HU database, is now available. A description of the COPY command appeared in the March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter. Due to the centralized procedures currently in place for subject authority work, initially, the COPY command will only be available to a very limited number of operators in the Widener Cataloging and Processing Department and in OSPR. [Note that the introduction of the COPY command means that you can no longer truncate the COPR (create OPR) command to "cop". You now must type "copr". Sorry for the inconvenience.] If you have any questions about this command, please contact Robin Wendler or Julie Wetherill at OSPR (495-3724).
DERIve command now available. The new DERIve command is now available. DERIve allows an operator to create a record for a different edition of a previously cataloged title, or to put certain commonly recurring fields in a series of records (that is, templating). Authorization to use DERIve is based on the operator's authorization level for creating bibliographic records. A full description of the DERIve command appeared in the February and March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletters.
Do not DERIve bibliographic records containing diacritics from a dial-up or network connection. If you have any questions about this command, please contact Robin Wendler or Julie Wetherill at OSPR (495-3724).
Report on March system problems. The HOLLIS and HULPR systems experienced difficulties during Thursday morning, 7 March. A combination of problems led to a serious deterioration in system performance resulting in both systems being brought down around 9:30 am. By 10:30 am both systems were again functioning normally. OSPR has installed new procedures that should prevent this problem from occurring in the future. As always, thank you for your patience.
AI and LR databases -- an update. Expanded Academic Index (AI) and Legal Resource Index (LR) have been available since 11 February. Tracey reminded liaisons to contact OSPR with any questions or comments about these new databases. OSPR has tentatively scheduled a panel discussion about AI and LR for the May liaisons meeting.
OSPR Systems Development Division is currently working on the development of a function which would allow operators to display Harvard library holdings (from the HU database) for any given AI or LR citation. According to preliminary specifications, while displaying an AI (or LR) citation record, a user would be able to request HU holdings information without leaving the AI database. OSPR anticipates that this holdings display enhancement will become available in time for the 1991 Fall semester. OSPR will keep liaisons posted as this project progresses.
In response to a question concerning activity levels for these new databases, Tracey stated that analysis of transaction data for February is currently underway and will be publicized as soon as it is available.
Access control in AI/LR databases. Tracey reminded liaisons that the University has a contractual obligation to the producer of AI and LR data (Information Access Company) to limit access to these databases to members of the Harvard community. In order to comply with this agreement, AI and LR are freely available from any library public terminal, but patrons using HOLLIS from a dial-up or network connection must have a current Harvard ID to access these restricted databases.
If a patron is denied access (via dial-up or network), he/she can contact one of the following libraries for assistance:
As the University adds new databases to HOLLIS, it is likely that at least some will have access restrictions. Library staff working at staff terminals normally will not be affected by access restrictions but they should be aware of when library patrons will encounter these restrictions. A full description of access control appeared in the March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter.
Internet access to outside systems -- an update. The OSPR project to provide access from HOLLIS staff terminals to systems available over the Internet continues. In February, OSPR called for input from staff about what systems would be of interest to Harvard libraries (February 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter). At the March liaisons meeting, Tracey described in general terms what Internet access from a HOLLIS staff terminal would mean for library staff. She also handed out a diagram illustrating Internet access.
An Internet connection outside of HOLLIS would involve a staff member selecting an option from the OIT "AVAILABLE" menu that would lead directly to an outside system, or to an Internet pathway to many outside systems. Harvard staff and faculty are already using the Internet from their HUBS accounts set up through OIT. Direct Internet connection from a staff terminal would eliminate the need for a HUBS account for outside access. (Note that a HUBS account is still necessary to use electronic mail (e.g., BITNET) on the Internet.
Staff are encouraged to contact Dale Flecker at OSPR (495-3724) with suggestions about systems to access over the Internet.
Testing the Internet connection to EBSCONET. OSPR needs the assistance of library staff to test the Internet connection to EBSCONET. Staff who are already familiar with EBSCONET can assist OSPR in identifying any discrepancies between the two different access methods. To try the Internet connection, follow these steps:
To end the EBSCO session, you must hold down the (CTRL) key and press F1 (this is equivalent to pressing PA1). Please report any problems to Dora Volfson at OSPR (495-3724).
HOLLIS terminal network support -- an update. As the HOLLIS staff terminal network grows, the challenge to provide comprehensive hardware support increases. In November 1990, Steve Thornton (OSPR Network and Communication Specialist) proposed a number of changes to network service procedures to improve service. At the March meeting, Steve reviewed these changes.
New network support office hours. Steve now holds office hours from 9 to 10 am on weekdays. You can reach him at 495-3724 if you have questions or problems with HOLLIS equipment.
Produce a network troubleshooting guide. In February 1991, Steve distributed a HOLLIS Hardware Troubleshooting Card -- a quick reference card designed to assist library staff in identifying and solving many of the most common HOLLIS hardware problems. Copies of this troubleshooting card were sent to all HOLLIS liaisons - - a copy should reside near every HOLLIS terminal.
Establish a network liaison for each library unit. Each library unit has appointed a network liaison who will be the primary contact for network-related problems. In many units, the current HOLLIS primary liaison has undertaken network liaison responsibilities. Steve has held training sessions for network liaisons representing the smaller units. He is currently scheduling training for larger units.
Improve OSPR support in Steve's absence. When Steve is not available, OSPR staff now use a network trouble report form to record information about hardware problems. Staff who call OSPR regarding a network problem will be asked to provide such information as a terminal's identification, netname, mux number, and port number. These forms will be relayed to Steve unless there is need for immediate action. OSPR staff are now better prepared to handle service calls in Steve's absence.
Scheduling equipment installations. When new installation projects arise, Steve will schedule these in a manner that allows adequate time for regular network maintenance. Libraries should always plan new installs and terminal moves well in advance. Eight week notice is required for projects which require the installation or moving of more than 2 terminals. Terminal work scheduled less than 2 months in advance will be scheduled as time allows.
HOLLIS training file in catalog mode. Currently, staff have access to a HOLLIS training file (TR) in HULPR technical services mode. Functions in the TR database mirror those available in the HU database (although the database itself is much smaller than HU). OSPR is investigating making the TR database available in catalog mode for staff training and experimentation. If this were done, the TR database would not appear as an option on the "Welcome to HOLLIS" screen, but staff would still select the TR database by typing "tr" and pressing [ENTER] or [RETURN]. TR record display and command options would mirror those in HU with the exception that TR would not allow keyword searching.
One notable implication of making TR available in catalog mode is that although we would suppress TR from displaying on the "Welcome to HOLLIS" screen, there probably would be no way to prevent the public from accidentally choosing TR. For example, it is entirely possible that someone (for whatever reason) may type "tr" from the "Welcome to HOLLIS" screen in an attempt to use the TRACE command ("tr" is one truncated form of this command). OSPR could design the TR search options screen (the first screen displayed when you choose a database) to warn the public that TR is for staff use only.
OSPR will continue to investigate this issue. Anyone with comments or suggestions should contact Julie Wetherill at OSPR (495-3724).
Creating standard serials in HOLLIS. It is now possible for authorized operators to create standard serial format records in the HU database. This change reflects a decision by the University Library Council to allow the retrospective cataloging of serials directly in HOLLIS. Harvard policy continues to require that all current cataloging for serials be contributed to CONSER via a bibliographic utility.
In order to create a standard serial record in HOLLIS an operator must change the ENCL fixed field element to the value "h" (non-provisional, created in HOLLIS) on the bibliographic record workscreen. A detailed account of ULC's decision appears in the March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter. If you plan to create standard serials in HOLLIS, contact Ruth Haas in CONSER (495-5684).
List of subfield k codes. Elizabeth Vernon distributed a list of subfield k codes used by various library units. The goal is to document the use of subfield k by Harvard libraries. If you have comments about the list or want a copy, please contact your HOLLIS liaison or Elizabeth Vernon in the Judaica Department at Widener (495-3335).
Instructions for programming function keys. Elizabeth Vernon and Leo Evangelista are currently drafting instructions for programming the IBM 3163 function keys. OSPR will review these instructions and plans to include them in the HOLLIS Reference Manual, Appendix M (Guide to Telex and IBM Terminals). If you have any comments related to this topic, please contact Elizabeth (495-3335) or Leo (495-3559).
Index enhancements -- an update. MacKenzie Smith reviewed two proposed index enhancements that would solve problems identified by Harvard library staff. The first is an enhancement to the way HOLLIS handles musical sharps (#) and flats in its indexes. The second is a modification to the characters that separate parts of index secondary text that would eliminate some confusing index displays. [A full description of these proposed enhancements appears in the March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter.] Liaisons approved both enhancements as proposed. The programming and index regeneration required by these changes will take approximately 6 weeks. OSPR anticipates that these enhancements will become available in May and will notify staff through this Newsletter and HOLLIS electronic mail when they become available.
HULPR1 terminal type available. Tracey reminded liaisons that the new HULPR1 terminal type is now available on all four HULPR dial-up ports. Staff who dial 495-8541 to access HULPR and select the HULPR1 terminal type will now be able to input fill characters (^), subfield delimiters ( | ), and end-of-field marks (\). A full description of HULPR1 appears in the March 1991 HOLLIS Newsletter and in Appendix M of the HOLLIS Reference Manual. If you have any questions, contact Derek Katz at 495-3724.
Downloading from the HOLLIS Public Catalog -- an update. Priscilla Caplan, head of the OSPR Systems Development Division, presented a status report on an OSPR project to improve support for downloading of HOLLIS Public Catalog records. See "Status of Downloading from the HOLLIS Public Catalog" in the Feature Articles section for a detailed account of Cilla's report.
Yet another review of the HOLLIS enhancements list. In preparation for the spring HOLLIS Managers Meeting, Tracey plans to review the existing enhancements list at the April liaisons meeting. The goal is to remove from this list any unidentifiable or obsolete items and to re-prioritize the rest of the list, in view of the developments in HOLLIS since the last review of this list.
In reviewing the report, HAAC affirmed the first recommendation but had reservations about the second. Although session logging was the best of all transmission methods known at the time, it was felt by HAAC (and by SSHUSH as well) that it was not a very good method, and that some better alternative ought to be found. OSPR was therefore charged with continuing to investigate methods of record transmission. The question of the best download format was put on hold until the question of transmission method was resolved.
OSPR now recommends using electronic mail (e-mail) as a transmission mechanism for downloading, which would be implemented roughly as follows: the user will be able to collect a set of records (SAVE) during his terminal session, and to issue a command for the system to transmit them (SEND). HOLLIS will respond to a SEND command by prompting the user for his e-mail id, and will then proceed to mail the set of records to this address. After the user exits HOLLIS he can log on to his e-mail account at any time, and transfer the records from his mailbox to his own microcomputer storage by whatever method is easiest. Advantages of the e-mail approach include the following:
There are also some disadvantages to this approach, the most obvious being that not all HOLLIS users currently have electronic mailboxes. However, e-mail accounts are available free of charge to all undergraduates, and at a nominal cost to all other members of the Harvard community. Another disadvantage is that this is a multi-step process, requiring the user to log out of HOLLIS and log in to another system to get to the mail and transfer it to his own microcomputer storage. The actual act of transfer to disk or diskette can be done with a single keystroke on many mail systems, but might be significantly more involved on others.
We are in the process of drafting a timeline for the implementation of downloading based on e-mail. A functional specification for the new HOLLIS SAVE and SEND commands has been forwarded to SSHUSH for their review, comment, and approval. Technical specifications for the mailing of record sets from HOLLIS are being prepared. In addition, a project has begun to solicit input from library staff and Harvard students and faculty on the best format (structure and content) for records mailed in this fashion. We hope to have these improvements to downloading operational by August of this year.
Notes and Reminders
Fifty-two libraries are scheduled to receive this supplement. If you would like to confirm your status as a recipient or make other arrangements for pick-up, call Eric or Daniel at 495-3724.
Order weeding -- an update. The fiche product WEEDED HOLLIS O/P/R RECORDS, CYCLE DATE 8812 was distributed on 20 March. There are nearly 250 sheets in this distribution because of the size of the projected weed (closed orders that have not been updated since December 1988).
OSPR has received reports of potential problems with this Weeded O/P/R fiche. Please check your copy for these problems (and any others you may find):
1) Check to see that you have page 100
2) You will probably have two of page 157. One of them is only printed on the left half of the fiche (a quick visual inspection will reveal the problem page). This page can be discarded.
Please contact Walter Stine in OSPR at 495-3724 if you need page 100 or if you discover any other problems. The actual weeding of O/P/Rs will take place over the next 3 weeks. OSPR will send out a final EMS message when the weeding is complete.
Security profile forms. Just a note about filling out security profile forms: If you are making a change to an existing operator profile but you are NOT changing the operator's password, DO NOT fill in the password part of the form. Supplying the operator name is sufficient for us to identify the operator you intend to change. Passwords should always be treated as private information and we all should refrain from writing them down whenever possible. Obviously when you need to create a new profile or when you change an existing operator's password, we need you to write it down on the form and send it to us -- but otherwise, passwords should not be supplied. Thanks.
Response Time Testing
Even if keyword test searches are included, more than 90% of all tested transactions had response times under 3 seconds. The results of these operator conducted tests do provide us with valuable information and so we will continue to conduct these tests on a monthly basis. As always, the help of our trusty band of response time test volunteers is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
Vendor File Changes in March