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HOLLIS Newsletter

Volume 10, Number 10 (October 1995)


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TABLE OF CONTENTS

  • Feature Article
  • HOLLIS Keyword Qualification Experiment
  • Notes from the September Meeting
  • IBM 3163 terminals off support after June 1996
  • Course Reserves and Circulation welcome new participants
  • Keyword qualification experiment this fall
  • HULINFO listserv update
  • Fall 1995 public documentation update
  • ACF2 security in HULPR coming in October
  • Harrassowitz data in BF database
  • MeSH authority data-loads planned
  • New Harvard - RLG contract signed
  • Demonstration of the new World Wide Web Hollis Plus
  • Notes and Reminders
  • Reminders about HOLLIS Plus user validation
  • Sending HOLLIS record sets to the correct address
  • New data elements in IAC records
  • ALA policy on confidentiality of library records
  • HOLLIS Enhancements Update
  • OIS Current Projects
  • Client/Server development strategy for public access to data resources
  • Statement on the privacy of patron data in HOLLIS


    Feature Article


    HOLLIS Keyword Qualification Experiment
    by Jonathan Rothman
    Late this fall OIS will implement some keyword qualification options in HOLLIS on an experimental basis. The following limits will be made available in keyword searches:

    	//la=	 (language) excluding //la=eng  (english)
    
    
    
    	//fo=	 (format)   excluding //fo=bks  (books)
    
    
    
    	//yr=NNNN (year), limiting to a specific year.
    
    
    
    	//yr=NNN? (year), limiting to a specific decade.
    Unfortunately, the basic architecture of the HOLLIS keyword search engine makes it likely that keyword qualification will use large quantities of computing resources. After the new functions are introduced, the system will be very closely monitored. If system performance and/or computing costs are impacted too greatly as a result of keyword qualification, the qualification functions will be rapidly disabled. Naturally, we all hope that this will not occur.

    For the experiment to give us a reasonable idea of the impact of keyword qualification, the public must be aware of the new functions (and use them). Given the fact that the new functions might conceivably need to be disabled with little or no warning, the public must also be aware of the experimental nature of this feature. Any library staff who have opinions about specific periods in the late fall which would (or would not!) be good times for this experiment, please get in contact with Jon Rothman at OIS (jon_rothman@harvard.edu OR 5-3724). I would also appreciate hearing from anyone with ideas on how best to publicize the experiment. Thank you!!

    Background

    • The keyword search engine used for the HOLLIS OPAC comes from NOTIS. OIS does not have access to the program code and therefore cannot change how it works.
    • The keyword search engine does not support a true limiting (or qualification) feature which would retrieve a result set and then exclude any items which do not satisfy qualifiers.
    • Given the above, the only way to implement keyword qualification is to treat the qualifier as another term which is "and'ed" to the query. In other words, the query:

      "kw=dog and cat//fo=ser"
      is actually processed as:
      "kw=dog and kw=cat and kfo=ser"
      (where 'kfo' means keyword format).

      As you can probably guess, retrieving the set of all the serial format items from a database as big as the HU file, then "and'ing" them with all the items which contain 'dog' and all of the items which contain 'cat' is not very efficient. For some values the set retrieved by the 'qualifier' could be huge (e.g. if fo=bks were allowed, it would create a temporary file consisting of over 2/3 of the HU database every time it was used).

    • OIS has made a number of attempts over the years to assess the impact that keyword qualification would have on HOLLIS performance and costs and on the performance of other mainframe systems (including HULPR). In general, the test results have been discouraging. It has always been extremely difficult to interpret the tests, however, because no-one can predict just how much keyword qualification will actually be used.
    • In light of all of the above, SSHUSH made a proposal that OIS carry out the experimental implementation described in the first part of this article so that we can determine once and for all whether keyword qualification in HOLLIS is supportable. HAAC approved the proposal and the experimental implementation will take place later this fall.

    If you have questions or comments, please contact Jon Rothman at OIS (jon_rothman@harvard.edu OR 5-3724).

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    Notes from the September Meeting

    IBM 3163 terminals off support after June 1996
    Jon reminded the group on behalf of Heather Reid that IBM 3163 terminals will go off support after June 1996. Repairs to IBM 3163s will be possible after June 1996 but the library will be liable for all parts and service charges. Libraries preparing to renew IBM terminal service contracts in December of this year should keep this in mind. Contact Heather Reid in OIS if you have questions.

    Course Reserves and Circulation welcome new participants
    The Kummel Library of the Geological Sciences is the twelfth Harvard library to participate in HOLLIS automated circulation. The circulation status of Kummel materials is now available in the Public Catalog. The other circulation participants are: Cabot, Countway, Design, Divinity, Gutman, Hilles, Lamont, Kennedy School, Physics Research, Widener, and Wolbach.

    The Kennedy School of Government Library is the latest unit to use the HOLLIS course reserves processing function. The RV database now includes course information and circulation status for Kennedy's course reserves materials. The other course reserves participants are: Lamont, Hilles, and Cabot.

    Keyword qualification experiment this fall
    The programming to allow qualification of keyword searches is now underway; a release date in early November is tentatively planned. See the feature article, "HOLLIS Keyword Qualification Experiment," in this issue.

    OIS suspects that when keyword qualification is widely available, it will make heavy demands on HOLLIS system resources. But, the only way to test this is to install keyword qualification and monitor system performance. There is a possibility that the demand on system resources will be so high that OIS will have to deinstall it, possibly the same day it becomes available. Earlier this year the HOLLIS Administrative Advisory Committee (HAAC) approved this approach with the understanding that OIS might need to back it off in case of problems.

    Library staff with suggestions on 1) how best to publicize this experimental feature and 2) a preferred release date in November, should contact Jon Rothman in OIS.

    HULINFO listserv update
    Julie Wetherill reported that the HULINFO discussion list is now completely closed. Only members of the Harvard community can subscribe and only subscribers can post messages. As a result, the recent message "spamming" (where unrelated messages are sent from outside sources to the list) has been stopped. One unfortunate result of this change is that some HULINFO subscribers will no longer be able to post messages because their current e-mail addresses do not match the addresses known to the listserv. The solution is to resubscribe to HULINFO. Subscribers who encounter this problem should also notify the HULINFO moderator (Julie) so she can delete their original e-mail address.

    If other sorts of problems arise please contact Julie Wetherill in OIS.

    Fall 1995 public documentation update
    (A publicity poster announcing the fall releases of HOLLIS and HOLLIS Plus was distributed shortly after the September Liaisons meeting.) There were some problems with the distribution of these sheets and the OIS HOLLIS Documentation Coordinator (who shall remain nameless) expressed her deepest apologies to all.

    Library staff may have noticed that they received about half the number of HOLLIS Reference Guides than normal. This was intentional. Two new features, keyword qualification and patron-initiated Depository requests, are scheduled to appear later this fall and OIS tentatively plans to revise the Reference Guide with this information for the 1996 spring semester.

    ACF2 security in HULPR coming in October
    Linda Marean reviewed the changes in HULPR signon procedures that will take effect when ACF2 security is implemented on 24 October. (An article detailing this change appeared in the September issue of this newsletter and is attached to the end of this issue.) HOLLIS Liaisons, please distribute copies of this attachment to staff in your unit. OIS wants to minimize the potential disruption caused by the new, unfamiliar HULPR signon screen which will appear starting on 24 October.

    Libraries that use shared HULPR signons should be prepared in the event one operator changes the password for a signon used by other operators. Since HULPR signons will expire every six months under ACF2, this shared signon problem will recur. OIS recommends one HULPR signon per operator to avoid this problem. One other ACF2 characteristic to note: if an operator supplies the wrong password five consecutive times during signon, ACF2 will shut down that HULPR signon. The operator will have to contact Linda Marean in OIS to reactivate the signon.

    Harrassowitz data in BF database
    Robin Wendler announced that OIS is about to resume loading preliminary bibliographic records from Otto Harrassowitz in to the Books File (BF database). Loading of Harrassowitz data originally began in February 1995, but data conversion problems delayed access to these records until now. These are definitely preliminary records; often including pricing and standing order information. Harrassowitz is trying to follow basic descriptive rules, but Harvard staff will want to upgrade these records once they are in HU. Staff should use these records like preliminary (ENCL: 5) records from the Library of Congress, that is, migrate them from BF to HU as new records, or merge them with an existing HU record. These records will not overlay HU records during the Standing Search process. In order for these records to be overlayed by a utility cataloging record, the encoding level in the preliminary record must be changed to 'a'.

    A more detailed article describing Harrassowitz and Casalini records in BF appeared in the February 1995 issue of this newsletter. Contact Robin Wendler in OIS if you have questions.

    MeSH authority data-loads planned
    OIS is preparing to load into the SH database several sets of medical subject heading (MeSH) authority records, including the latest 1995 update. These have been held up while OIS made changes to HOLLIS to accommodate NLM changes in the coding of subject subdivisions. OIS will also be loading into HU the MeSH authority records generated by OCLC authority processing. When the loads begin, OIS will notify staff via HULINFO. Contact Robin Wendler in OIS if you have questions.

    New Harvard - RLG contract signed
    Harvard recently signed a new two-year contract with the Research Libraries Group (RLG). The new contract provides for unlimited technical services searching in RLIN files and access to 13 Eureka databases via HOLLIS Plus (Avery Index, Dissertation Abstracts, English Short Title Catalog, Handbook of Latin American Studies, Hispanic American Periodicals Index, History of Science and Technology, Index to Foreign Legal Periodicals, Inside Information, Newspaper Abstracts, RLG Bibliographic File, Russian Academy of Sciences Bibliographies, U.S. Government Periodicals Index, and World Law Index). The new contract does not cover Ariel services or batch products. Contact Robin Wendler in OIS if you have questions.

    Demonstration of the new World Wide Web HOLLIS Plus
    One year ago, the HOLLIS Plus gopher service first became available as the University Library's library resource navigator. Since that time, almost every library has installed public HOLLIS Plus workstations. Including the recent addition of eleven new SilverPlatter and Eureka databases, the number of HOLLIS Plus information resources has grown from 34 to 65. The latest milestone is the debut of a World Wide Web version as an alternative to the gopher version of HOLLIS Plus.

    At the September meeting, Kathy Klemperer (OIS Assistant Director for Systems Development) demonstrated the new World Wide Web HOLLIS Plus and spoke about how HOLLIS Plus and the World Wide Web fit into the University Library's information delivery strategy.

    Accessing the Web version of HOLLIS Plus
    To access HOLLIS Plus via the World Wide Web, your workstation will need a web browser (like Netscape, Mosaic, or Lynx), telnet client software, and a connection to Harvard's High Speed Data Network (HSDN) or the Internet. The microcomputer workstation should be relatively beefy (for example, minimum suggested configuration for IBM PCs is a 386SX with a minium of 1MB diskspace and 4MB RAM). Point your web browser to the URL: http://hplus.harvard.edu. For assistance, contact your local network support office or the OIT Network Information Center (NIC; 496-2001; helpdesk@nic.harvard.edu). Also, staff in the OIS Network group are available for consultation. In the near future, OIT will offer information on world wide web and telnet software from its NIC ftp site. Contact the NIC at 496-2001 for more information on the ftp site. Kathy noted that OIS is creating a document with recommended world wide web and telnet client configurations for accessing the web version of HOLLIS Plus.

    Comparing gopher and web versions
    Both versions of HOLLIS Plus offer the same alphabetic and subject listings of resources, and share other features like help files, resource search and launch, and a comment facility. However, the World Wide Web interface is different from that of gopher, so menu design and arrangement of selections is slightly different. At this point, gopher and web versions do not differ significantly in the resources they offer. There are two "web-only" resources currently available: some full text economics and history journals from the Journal Storage Project (JSTOR) and the NASA Astrophysics Data System. (Suzanne Kemple noted that Hilles Library was the source for many of the journals available via JSTOR.) OIS expects more web-only data to become available, so the differences in resources available on the gopher and web versions of HOLLIS Plus will increase over time.

    HOLLIS Plus and future information strategies
    OIS will maintain the gopher version of HOLLIS Plus for as long as necessary, and will attempt to keep the gopher and web versions in-synch (in terms of features and resources) whenever possible. However, the World Wide Web is an important part of OIS development strategy for future information delivery products. Libraries should be aware of the web's strategic importance and prepare for it. OIS recently distributed a memo for HOLLIS managers announcing the webbed HOLLIS Plus, which also included a white paper describing the OIS development strategy for the World Wide Web. (The white paper is appended to this issue.)

    Liaison questions
    John Collins commented that some Harvard libraries have developed their own home pages with links to information resources of interest to their clientele. Would it be possible to somehow indicate the existence of these resources to a user from inside HOLLIS Plus? Perhaps list them along with HOLLIS Plus resources from the search and launch menu? Kathy agreed that the information would be useful and suggested that the HOLLIS Plus Working Group investigate further. A liaison asked about the coverage of JSTOR journals. Specifically, why the latest five years of journals were not available? Suzanne Kemple suspects that recent issues are not available because of copyright restrictions. She also noted that JSTOR had only processed three journals so far but there were plans for more.

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    Notes and Reminders
    Reminders about HOLLIS Plus user validation
    HOLLIS Plus is designed so that users outside of libraries are asked for their Harvard ID and last name before being allowed to access databases for which Harvard has a Harvard-only license.

    The validation list is derived from the HOLLIS patron database. Every time the patron database is updated automatically from registrar or personnel files, the HOLLIS Plus patron list is also updated. However, if patron records are updated manually (for example, if a patrons permissions are revoked or reinstated), then the changes are not made to the HOLLIS Plus file until the next automatic update is triggered. This could take anywhere from a day to two weeks.

    If you have made a manual change to a patron's record and that patron needs immediate personal access to HOLLIS Plus databases, please call OIS (5-3724) and ask to have the HOLLIS Plus patron validation database updated. If there is a great need for immediate updating of this sort, OIS can institute a more automatic procedure.

    Also, please remember (and new staff members please note) that library staff may register their IP addresses with OIS and thereby bypass the validation procedure. Fill out the HOLLIS Plus workstation/terminal registration form attached to the Newsletter and return it by e-mail or paper mail to Patti Fucci in OIS.

    Sending HOLLIS record sets to the correct address
    During September OIS noticed an unusually high number of HOLLIS Public Catalog e-mail record sets not reaching their destinations. In most cases, the user was from FAS and the address supplied was incomplete. That is, supplying an address like barney@fas rather than barney@fas.harvard.edu. While it is true that FAS e-mail account holders can send mail to others in FAS without specifying the full domain (barney@fas), this method will not work when sending mail from one network to another within or outside of Harvard. Record sets sent out of the HOLLIS Public Catalog by FAS account holders will not be delivered unless the full e-mail address is supplied (barney@fas.harvard.edu). This is true for other networks as well. The destination address can be incomplete only for record sets sent to e-mail accounts on "Harvarda" (HUBS and CMS), since HOLLIS and Harvarda mail accounts are on the same network.

    Public Services staff should remind students and faculty of this fact. Record sets addressed incorrectly are bounced to a "dead mail" account monitored by OIS. OIS staff will forward these lost sets whenever possible. Contact Julie Wetherill in OIS if you have questions.

    New data elements in IAC records
    Information Access Company plans to introduce two new data elements, Publication Format and Publication Audience, to its bibliographic citations. These new elements will start appearing with the November 1995 updates to Academic Index (AI) and Legal Resource Index (LR).

    Publication Format is composed of the following categories:

  • For HOLLIS:
  • For HOLLIS Plus:
    Dictionary
  • Magazine/Journal
  • Newswire
    Encyclopedia
  • Newsletter
  • Pamphlet
    Investment Report
  • Newspaper
  • Reference Book

    Publication Format data will reside in subfield |k (form of material) of field 245 and is retrievable by a general keyword (find kw) or title keyword (find kti) search.

    Publication Audience is composed of the following categories:

    Academic
  • Professional
  • Children's
  • Trade
  • General
  • Publication Audience data will reside in field 521 (target audience note). Field 521 is not indexed and therefore the data it contains cannot be searched.

    IAC reports that every journal title will be assigned a Publication Format type and a Publication Audience type. Any single journal title may be assigned more than one format or audience type. If you have questions, contact Robin Wendler in OIS.

    ALA policy on confidentiality of library records
    As part of the HOLLIS Administrative Advisory Committee's policy on access to HOLLIS patron records (January 1990), the Committee recommended that any staff member with authorization to access patron records should be required to read the ALA policy on "Confidentiality of Library Records" and to review said policy on an annual basis. OIS periodically reproduces the ALA policy as part of the HOLLIS Newsletter. Circulation supervisors are encouraged to distribute a copy of the policy to all appropriate library staff. A separate, specific statement on the privacy of patron data in HOLLIS is appended to the end of this issue.

    ("Confidentiality of Library Records", from the ALA Handbook of Organization 1989/1990 and Membership Directory, 1989, pp.243-244) "The American Library Association strongly recommends that the responsible officers of each library, cooperative system, and consortium in the United States:

    1. Formally adopt a policy which specifically recognizes its circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users with specific materials to be confidential.
    2. Advise all librarians and library employees that such records shall not be made available to any agency of state, federal, or local government except pursuant to such process, order, or subpeona as may be authorized under the authority of, and pursuant to, federal, state, or local law relating to civil, criminal, or administrative discovery procedures or legislative investigatory power.
    3. Resist the issuance or enforcement of any such process, order, or subpeona until such time as a proper showing of good cause has been made in a court of competent jurisdiction."

    Contact Tracey Robinson in OIS if you have questions.

    | Table of Contents | OIS Contacts |

    HOLLIS Enhancements Update
    Changes completed to HOLLIS since 8/2/95
    This column features brief descriptions of some of the smaller completed changes to HOLLIS which are not described more fully in individual articles. OIS projects and major enhancements will continue to be described in greater detail in newsletter articles. If you have comments, questions, or would like more details about any of these changes, contact Jon Rothman at OIS, either by telephone at 5-3724 or by email at ROTHMN@HARVARDA.

    1. Two abends were replaced with warning messages: the 846L abend was replaced with a warning that the current o/p/r is too long to have more statements; the 846S abend was replaced with a warning that the current invoice is too big to accept more pay statements. (See longer description of this in the September HOLLIS newsletter, page 6)
    2. Work has been completed to prevent duplicate Harrassowitz records from being loaded into the BF file.
    3. When records containing 856 fields (URL s) were loaded into HULPR from OCLC and RLIN, the 856 fields were being discarded. This has been corrected and 856 s are now transferred into holdings records in HULPR.
    4. Acquisitions staff using networked terminals who don t set a current invoice after signing on have sometimes picked up an invoice left from someone else s session as their current invoice. This has occasionally led to activity being posted to unintended invoices. Changes have been made so that it is no longer possible to pick up an invoice from a previous session as current.
    5. Until recently, when pay statements were posted to an established invoice, the update date in the invoice record fixed fields was not updated. This resulted in pay statements sometimes having a later update date than the invoice as a whole. This has been changed.
    6. Programming has been completed to allow the creation and loading into HULPR of unlinked item records for materials transferred from the New England Deposit Library (NEDL) to the Harvard Depository. The transfer project has begun and unlinked item records are being loaded weekly.
    7. Cabot houses several thousand books with the LOC of "wid" (Widener) and needs to be able to circulate them. A temporary location of "CABOT" has been defined and assigned to these wid items so that they can be charged from the CA service unit.
    8. The HOLLIS OPAC has been changed to display "Medieval Studies Library" for the LOC code ‘pal (rather than the previous literal Paleography Library). Widener Room D has changed from the Paleography Library to the Medieval Studies Library. Many of the paleography materials have been moved to Smyth Classical Library although some remain. Catalog literal now reads 'medieval studies'.
    9. Changes have been made to HOLLIS indexing to add entries for 18x, 48x, and 58x fields from MeSH authority records to the Subject index. In addition to the changes listed above, 5 additional small changes which affect the HOLLIS infrastructure were completed recently. "Infrastructure changes" are enhancements and bug fixes that are needed to ensure reliable operation of HOLLIS but which do not have directly visible or readily describable functional effects.

      | Table of Contents | OIS Contacts |

      OIS Current Projects
      This column tracks the large and medium-sized OIS development projects underway and pending. For more information on a particular project, contact the OIS staff member in the "Contact" column.

      ProjectContactTarget dateMajor milestones
      Gov Docs data in HUR. Wendler--Test data under development; programming to be scheduled.
      HU to RLINR Wendler10/95Proposed model for RLG in hand--to be reviewed by HUL 9/95.
      CICS upgradeC. Husbands9/96Selection of strategy by 10/15.
      Recon part 3R Wendler--MeSH corrections due 9/16.
      HOLLIS Distributed Reporting J Rothman3/95Update methodology, documentation, and statistics continues
      Casalini/Harrasowitz
      (add data to BF)
      R Wendler--Harrassowitz ready to go into production
      ACF2 L Marean10/95Installed in HULTST; HULPR and HOLLIS on 24 October.
      FETCHERRSC Husbands10/95Programming in progress; OPAC --> Circ link.
      Keyword indexing enhancements
      (from LISH report)
      J Rothman--Implementation inFall '95.
      UNIX server infrastructure and supportT Robinson
      K Klemperer
      --Develop and evaluate infrastructure for support of new server machines.
      NEDL
      (move materials to HD)
      J Rothman9/95NEDL to HD Transfer in production.
      HD automationK Klemperer8/95Miscellaneous programming underway. FETCHERRS being spec'd.
      SEICK Klemperer1/96
      pilot
      Awaiting hardware; negotiating SiteSearch license.
      DUCK Klemperer--Production deferred. Will revisit in Fall.

      | Table of Contents | OIS Contacts |


      Client/Server development strategy
      for public access to data resources


      HARVARD UNIVERSITY LIBRARY
      Office for Information Systems
      Kathy Klemperer 9/5/95

      I.

    10. Where we are now

      Presently there are two main public access routes to information resources at Harvard: HOLLIS, the mainstay, which contains the Catalog and a number of bibliographic databases, and HOLLIS Plus, which provides a navigational framework and makes automatic connections to a number of databases both local and remote. HOLLIS Plus is accessible in two ways: as a gopher, which was made available in Fall 1994, and as a WWW system, available in Fall 1995.

      II.

    11. Trends and influences in the industry

      There are several industry trends and influences that we need to keep in mind when plotting a strategy for future information services.

      The first is that information outside the catalog is increasingly likely to come from a variety of locations outside the home institution, as data providers sell subscriptions for access to databases rather than selling tapes of raw data for institutions to load into their own systems. At Harvard it has proven to be cost effective to purchase access to a number of bibliographic databases that are located outside of Harvard rather than loading the data into HOLLIS: from OCLC (INSPEC, a FirstSearch database located in Ohio), from RLG (9 Eureka databases located in California), and from SilverPlatter (6 databases located either in Norwood, MA or on the HCL database server). Other data is served from various locations at Harvard: ABI Inform from the Business School Library and MEDLINE from the Countway Library.

      The second trend that is evident in commercial systems, both for libraries and the rest of the information industry, is a movement toward client-server technology. Virtually every new information-retrieval system on the market today follows this model, where the data is stored centrally on a server, and the user interface is distributed to client software located on individual workstations on the network. Client-server systems that library staff may be familiar with include the Harvard online telephone and e-mail directory, HOLLIS Distributed Reporting, and Harvard's Electronic Store, as well as numerous library online catalogs from vendors such as Ameritech, Sirsi Corporation and Data Research. The University's Administrative Data Project is pursuing the migration of all of Harvard's administrative systems to a client-server architecture.

      The third emerging trend is toward the incorporation of World Wide Web technology into the client-server model. The picture that is emerging is that of a gateway, where a WWW server acts as middleman between WWW browsers (clients) on the workstations and databases on various servers, both local and remote. The WWW gateway delivers the user interface to the WWW clients, and provides a navigational framework, access control, and connection dialogues. Browsing the WWW will reveal countless examples of this phenomenon, from the US Postal Service's ZIP code directory to the University of Virginia's full-text collection. This is proving to be a powerful model for two reasons: client software distribution becomes a simple process because WWW browsers are publicly available at no cost and are already installed on campus, and user interface maintenance becomes simplified because it is managed centrally.

      The fourth is more a standard than a trend: the Z39.50 protocol, which has become a standard fixture in virtually all library information systems. Z39.50 is a standard machine communication language used between clients and servers in information retrieval systems. In addition to providing online catalogs with Z39.50 capability, many vendors are now selling access to non-catalog data resources via a Z39.50 connection. The most prominent examples are RLG's Eureka databases and OCLC's FirstSearch databases, but CDPlus, Basis Plus, and soon SilverPlatter all offer such a connection.

      The final trend we are witnessing now is the combination of WWW and Z39.50 protocols. Many library systems vendors are now selling WWW-to-Z39.50 gateways, which allow institutions to create access to Z39.50 databases from a WWW server with minimal programming outlay. OCLC's WWW-to-Z39.50 gateway is called WebZ; Sirsi corporation's is called Web39.50.

      III.

    12. Strategy

      Keeping in mind the convergence of these trends, we are beginning a transition toward incorporating client-server technology and the WWW into the development strategy for the next generation of Harvard's University-wide information systems.

      The underlying goals are:

      • The integration of a variety of information services into a single navigational and access control system; that is, users should be able to access all the libraries' networked resources by connecting to a single system, which guides them to the resources they need and performs all necessary ID and password checking.
      • A consistent user view of all the resources.
      • Simple client distribution.
      • Ease of adding new resources to the system.

      Use of client-server technology and the WWW and Z39.50 in particular will bring us well along the road to these goals. The gateway model that is proposed is diagrammed conceptually below:

      Users employ WWW browsers to communicate with the centrally managed WWW server. Users who have no graphical WWW browser can use telnet or a terminal to communicate with a central WWW client which supports a simple terminal interface known as lynx. The WWW server is the traffic cop or gateway, providing access control, navigational assistance, and automatic connections to remote and local services. A second gateway converts the WWW protocol to Z39.50, to provide connections to resources that are Z39.50 compatible. The WWW sever provides a direct terminal interface connection to non-Z39.50 non-WWW databases, and makes a standard WWW connection to any WWW-based resources.

      This scheme organizes resources into an integrated but modular package. Because all traffic passes through the WWW sever, users can see a consistent "look and feel." Only those resources for which Harvard actually builds the user interface (that is, those accessible via the WWW-to-Z39.50 gateway) will have a truly consistent user interface, but other WWW-based resources will at least follow WWW conventions. Client distribution is simplified because there are free public domain WWW clients that many users already possess. Finally, adding new resources from remote sources becomes simply a matter of adding a new entry to a table. Of course, locally mounted databases will still involve considerable preparation.

      This scheme will evolve gradually over time. The complete integration of resources with a WWW user interface can only take place when all users have access to a workstation WWW browser and when all resources are either Z39.50- or WWW- compatible, thus obviating the need for any terminal connections.

      The path to this goal will involve several development efforts. The first is to prepare the way for the WWW server by making available a WWW version of HOLLIS Plus. This is already available as of September, 1995. The second will be to develop the WWW-to-Z39.50 gateway. By integrating this with HOLLIS Plus we will be able to provide a WWW-based user interface to remote data services such as RLIN Eureka and OCLC's FirstSearch. This will likely take place in early 1996. After that we will be able to mount some of our own data locally, and serve them up through the same WWW gateway, also probably in the first half of 1996.

      The Search Engine Implementation Project (known affectionately as SEIC), will address the second and third of these development efforts. Harvard has made a commitment to acquiring OCLC's SiteSearch system, which includes the gateway component, known as WebZ, and a database system, known as Newton, which gives us a platform outside of HOLLIS for mounting data locally.

      The specific phases that we can expect to see over the next few years will be:

      • WWW version of HOLLIS Plus.
      • Installation of the WWW-to-Z39.50 gateway, and provision of access to FirstSearch and Eureka databases through it, as an alternative to the current interfaces. This will include implementation of an access control mechanism for the WWW version of HOLLIS Plus.
      • Development of some internal databases to be mounted under the Newton database engine. The first of these is likely to be the Finding Aids database.
      • Development of a "hook-to-holdings" capability in the WWW gateway, and integrating this feature with remote Z39.50 databases.
      • Loading some bibliographic databases into the Newton engine, and displaying local holdings with citations.
      • Finally, when HOLLIS II makes its debut, it will be easy to provide public access to it from WWW-to-Z39.50 gateway, since HOLLIS II will be Z39.50 compatible.

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      Statement on the privacy of patron data in HOLLIS
      Most of the data stored in HOLLIS is considered to be "public" information. Exceptions to this rule include accounting information and some circulation information such as patron and billing data. Restricting access to patron information is of special concern to librarians because we feel a professional responsibility to protect the privacy of library patrons. This statement describes the two basic types of patron information available in HOLLIS and explains the privacy issues related to each.

      One type of patron information identifies or describes a patron himself, for example, a social security number, address, or phone number. A second type lists or identifies items that a patron has checked out, currently or in the past. The number of operators who have the authority to view these types of information is intentionally limited to as few as possible. For those operators who do require access to patron information to perform their daily work, this statement is intended to provide an explanation of the privacy issues and some guidelines to be followed in order that all library staff share in the responsibility to protect the privacy of library patrons.

      The HOLLIS patron file is a valuable tool for libraries due to the fact that it reflects data from the central university Human Resources file. It is used in HOLLIS to control circulation, as well as to control access to databases in HOLLIS which have usages restriction imposed by the vendors that supply Harvard with special data (for example, journal indexes). The information contained in the patron file should be considered "private" and should only be used by library staff to perform normal library functions. Information from a patron record should never be made public or given to anyone other than the patron in question. Addresses, phone number, and identification numbers are private information and should be treated as such. The patron file should never be used as a directory. The fact that the patron file has personal data that individuals can have suppressed from public directories, phone books, etc. reinforces the point that this information is private.

      The second type of patron information includes any information related to the borrowing details or habits of library patrons. In accordance with the American Library Association policy on the confidentiality of library records, library staff should recognize that "circulation records and other records identifying the names of library users [are] confidential in nature." In other words, information relating to what an individual has checked out (currently or historically) is private information. Positive identification must always be required of a person requesting information concerning materials he or she has on loan. Limited access to borrower information by library circulation staff may be necessary to resolve certain problems pertaining to circulation processing. Under no circumstances should a library staff member reveal to anyone other than the patron in question the identity of a person who has a certain book checked out. Likewise, recall and "on hold" information should be considered to be private information and should never be made public. Privacy pertains equally to specific circulation records (e.g., patron A has book X checked out) as well as to patterns of circulation (e.g., patron A borrows materials in subject area Y). No historical records are kept which would enable us to identify the past circulation activity of any individual.

      Special care must be taken to insure that access to patron circulation activity is used only by authorized library staff for appropriate library functions. Care should be taken to make sure that a terminal with access to patron records is never left logged on and unattended. Further, a terminal placed in a public service area which is used to access patron information should always be positioned so that the terminal screen is not viewable to the public. Needless to say, logon names and passwords should never be shared or be written on the bottom of a keyboard or be made accessible to unauthorized people in any other way.

      In summary, all library staff share a responsibility to protect the privacy of patron information. If you have any questions about this policy or encounter a situation in which your responsibility for upholding the privacy is unclear, please discuss it with your supervisor.

      Tracey Robinson
      Office for Information Systems
      October 1995

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