COOL Receives Library Innovation Award

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on October 14th, 2013

At the 2013 Ohio Library Council Convention and Expo, the Consortium of Ohio Libraries (COOL) was awarded the Library Innovation Award for the planning and implementation of a statewide consortium using the open source ILS Evergreen.

The consortium was a response to the diminishing state funding. As funds decreased, libraries were forced to find ways to reduce costs while meeting the increased service demands. Joining a consortium was an obvious way to reduce costs by sharing support, hardware, and other administrative fees. A consortium also provides for seamless resource sharing between institutions.

However, COOL took the benefits of a consortium a step further and decided to use Evergreen, an open source ILS, because it provided a feature rich software package at a fraction of the cost of proprietary alternatives. Additionally, using open source software gives the consortium the ability to customize and add functionality based on individual needs.

COOL_Directors201308

The project kicked off in early 2012, when the consortium was awarded an LSTA grant from the State Library of Ohio. By March of 2012, Community Library (Sunbury) was migrated into COOL-CAT. Since then eight other libraries have migrated and two more are scheduled to join in the coming months.

COOL would like to thank everyone that has made the project a success. OHIONET has been a solid partner throughout this whole project and COOL would not exist without their support. The State Library of Ohio is to be thanked for awarding the LSTA grant funds to get the project off the ground. The Evergreen community has been very kind and generous with their support as the consortium came together. Finally, COOL is thankful to the staff, trustees, and patrons that have supported us as we took on this project.

Thanks everyone.

Arcanum Public Library Is Live

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on August 15th, 2013

Today, Arcanum Public Library went live in COOL-CAT, the shared catalog of the Consortium of Ohio Libraries (COOL). Arcanum is the ninth library in Ohio to migrate onto the system. J.R. Clarke Public Library and Marvin Memorial are the next two libraries scheduled to migrate later in 2013. To see a full list of members and a map of locations, go to http://info.cool-cat.org/?page_id=13.

COOL is running on Evergreen, the open source ILS, and is supported by OHIONET out of Columbus, Ohio. If you have any questions about Evergreen or joining COOL, please feel free to contact consortium president, Chauncey Montgomery, at montgoc1@oplin.org or 740-965-3901, or Marilyn Walden, Director of Arcanum Public Library, waldenm1@oplin.org or 937-692-8484.

What a COOL Spring!

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on May 14th, 2013

Although the weather is finally getting warmer, Ohio is getting a bit COOLer as two more libraries join the Consortium of Ohio Libraries (COOL). COOL would like to welcome J.R. Clarke Public Library in Covington and Marvin Memorial Public Library in Shelby as its newest members to the consortium. Both libraries voted to join COOL at their May meetings. J.R. Clarke plans to migrate into COOL-CAT later this summer and Marvin Memorial is planning on migrating in the fall. They will be the 10th and 11th libraries in consortium.

COOL is a consortium managed and governed by a community of libraries, using the open source ILS, Evergreen. Technical support is provided by OHIONET in Columbus. For a current list of member libraries, visit http://info.cool-cat.org. For information about Evergreen, visit http://www.open-ils.org. Please contact Chauncey Montgomery at 740-965-3901 or montgoc1@oplin.org for more information.

Chair of COOL Elected to Evergreen Oversight Board

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on April 15th, 2013

During the recent Evergreen conference in Vancouver, four newly elected members to the Evergreen Oversight Board were announced.

The Board is the executive team of the Evergreen software project that makes guiding decisions and leads the project forward.

The goal of the Board is to :
i. promote, support, and advance the development of the Evergreen software;
ii. support and facilitate the growth of the international community of Evergreen users; and
iii. foster and protect the Evergreen assets.

Current Members (Bold are 2013 elected)
Shauna Borger Indiana State Library
Galen Charlton Equinox Software, Inc. Chair
Stephen Elfstrand MnPALS
Rogan Hamby York County Library (South Carolina) and SC LENDS
Ben Hyman British Columbia Libraries Cooperative Vice Chair
Kathy Lussier Massachusetts Library Network Cooperative
Elizabeth McKinney Georgia Public Library Service
Chauncey Montgomery Sunbury Community Library (Ohio)
Andrea Bunz Neiman Kent County Public Library (Maryland)
Yamil Suarez Berklee College of Music
Stephen Wills Beyond Print

Tony Bandy of OHIONET and Chauncey Montgomery of Community Library (Sunbury) will be representing Ohio at the upcoming Evergreen International Conference in Vancouver. They will be presenting a session at the conference.

Following is a brief description of their session:

While Evergreen continues to grow and innovate, more and more libraries and library consortium’s are moving to this amazing ILS system. However, for standalone libraries or newly formed consortiums, circulation within the system is a whole new game! From workflow to holds policies and those crazily-configured circulation rules, it takes both time and understanding to come to grips with the change. Given this, plan on taking this quick and enlightening tour of 5 themes you need to consider when implementing your library on an Evergreen consortium-level platform!

For the full schedule and more information, go to http://eg2013.sitka.bclibraries.ca/schedule/.

Two More Libraries Live in COOL

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on March 14th, 2013

COOL would like to officially welcome Blanchester Public Library and Wornstaff Memorial Public Library in Ashley to COOL-CAT. Today, March 14, the two libraries went live, bringing the total to eight libraries with approximately 390,000 items in the system.

It is hard to believe, but it was just a year ago that Community Library in Sunbury kicked COOL off. With the help and expertise of OHIONET and financial support from an LSTA grant awarded by the State Library of Ohio, COOL has been able to maintain its aggressive migration timeline.

We are excited to have these two libraries on board. Arcanum Public Library will be migrating into COOL-CAT this August.

Blanchester Public Library becomes COOL March 14

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on March 7th, 2013

The Blanchester Public Library will be closed to the public Thursday, March 14, as it is scheduled to go live on the Evergreen shared catalog as part of the Consortium of Ohio Libraries (COOL).

Library patrons are strongly encouraged to have their library cards with them to check out materials beginning March 11 as staff members will have limited access to account information during the week. Patrons also will not be able to access their account or the current online catalog until the new system is in place. No overdue fines will be incurred during this time.

The library is one of nine founding members of COOL, which was formed in 2012. The consortium consists of independent libraries striving to provide innovative services while being more efficient with diminishing public resources.

Joining the consortium will give library cardholders quick access to more than 400,000 items held by the consortium’s libraries. Items at other COOL libraries will be easily requestable in the catalog and should be available for pickup at Blanchester Public Library within a week.

Moving to the Evergreen platform also puts the library in the forefront of the open source movement and gives it much more of a voice in the development of the product compared to the current product from a commercial vendor.

Evergreen was developed by several public libraries in Georgia in 2006 and is now used by more than 1,000 libraries, including most of the public libraries in Indiana, several in South Carolina, and by one of the largest public libraries in the United States, the King County Library System in Washington. The COOL catalog is hosted and administered by OHIONET in conjunction with the member libraries.

The other current COOL members are Cardington-Lincoln Public Library, Community Library in Sunbury, Germantown Public Library, Mt. Gilead Public Library, Selover Public Library, Worch Memorial Public Library, Wornstaff Memorial Library, and Arcanum Public Library.

The library will re-open at 10 a.m., Friday, March. 15. For more information, contact the Blanchester Public Library at (937) 783-3585.

Worch goes live with COOL!

Posted by admin on January 8th, 2013

Today, the Worch Memorial Public Library went live with Evergreen on the Consortium of Ohio Libraries (COOL) shared catalog.

Worch Memorial is sixth of the nine founding members to migrate onto the system, with an estimated final library migration into the consortium scheduled for August 2013. Please visit the information site for more details about the Consortium, or take a look at the new catalog for Worch directly:  http://worch.cool-cat.org.

COOL is running on the open source ILS Evergreen. Originally developed by PINES (Public Information Network for Electronic Services) for the Georgia Public Library Service, Evergreen has since grown and is now used by over 1,000 libraries across 31 states, 4 countries, and 8 Canadian provinces. This count only includes reported installations, as anybody is free to download, install and try it out for their library.

If you have any questions about Evergreen or joining COOL, please feel free to contact consortium president Chauncey Montgomery, Director of the Community Library in Sunbury (montgoc1@oplin.org or 740-965-3901), or Meme Marlow, Director of the Worch Memorial Public Library, (marlowme@oplin.org or 937-526-3416).

User Survey Results

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on December 13th, 2012

A user survey was completed before and after migration to assess how user-friendly Evergreen is compared to previous systems. Participants were asked to rate how easy it was to complete basic tasks in the catalog. Responses ranged on a scale from “very easy” to “very difficult” Following is a list of tasks with the percentage of respondents that answered “very easy” and “easy”.

Task Legacy System Evergreen
Find a specific title. 80% 95%
Find titles based on a subject search. 65% 78%
Limit searches to a specific collection. 41% 56%
Understand the search results. 76% 77%
Place an item on hold. 88% 91%
Add items to a list or bookbag. 38% 79%
Access account information. 73% 92%
Renew items. 90% 87%
Request an item from another library. 50% 91%

In all categories, with the exception of renewing items, ease-of-use increased in Evergreen. It is also worth noting that the survey was completed just a month after migration, so this represents going from systems that had been in place for years to a new system.

It is also worth noting that the survey was completed when we were still on Evergreen 2.1. We are now running Evergreen 2.3, which has a much more intuitive OPAC.

COOL-CAT to Upgrade

Posted by Sunbury_Admin on October 30th, 2012

On November 18, COOL-CAT will be upgraded to Evergreen 2.3. The upgrade includes a major overhaul of the public catalog. New features will include a simpler interface, auto-complete, and loan history, among others. The new catalog is also much lighter than the traditional OPAC, so it should be faster. The staff client also has some new features. For more information, go to http://evergreen-ils.org/blog/?p=818. We are all looking forward to the upgrade.