Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Parlons d'EPS

Continuing this belated superconference blogging, it is high time I talk about EPS, Sirsidynix's Entreprise Portal Solution. It was definitely the most talked about product, with many many sessions, by sales staff, libraries and software development alike. It was also the product that conjured the most passion, both on the "excited to have all these features" side and the "this is not what I want" side.
Je m'explique:
Great dissatisfaction was expressed from many academic (and other) sites that this portal solution was clearly the next generationopac and came with so much "other duties assigned" add-on features. Many customer, academics in particular, complained about the out of the box, cookie cutter, seemingly public library focus. On the other hand, EPS customers seemed very pleased with their experience implementing the product, excited about the 2.2 version that should deliver both most fixes to theoriginal implementation bugs AND add the features that were not delivered in the 1st version. SD SD (sirsidynix software development ;) staff sounded very roud of the product and its great improvements for 2.2. (note some of these may not impress you but were long time wished of a number of sirsi customers...)
RSS feeds, CGI forms, spellcheck, the use of Central Search for federated searching and of Fast Search for faceted searching were at the top of the bragging lists. Especially exciting to me was the ability to "assume the quotes" to facilitate keyword search (eliminate the use of Boolean in quick search.) and the ability for users to a-view their accounts and renew their materials in the same page (!) and b-to modify their own holds pick up branch. I will post more about this product as we will implement at MPOW as soon as 2.2 has been in the real world for a little while. (hey, we had webcat 1st, we were the 1st unix install of iBistro, I'd like to give someone else a chance at pioneering this time...)

THIS JUST IN (unrelated to EPS) :
from a SD press release: "...Peter Gethin, SirsiDynix managing director for Europe, Middle East & Africa, has decided to retire..." I guess Peter wouldn't mind me referring to him as part of the old guard (the good old guard). Hoping everyone will know he was not only famous for the traditional joke and the Gethin report at superconference, he was a force, a smart, original, free thinker. I hope to hear from him again.

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