Librarians usually seem to be a rather stoic lot, but a new offering from Ericom Software Inc. could have some of them jumping for joy.
Ericom recently announced that the Toronto Public Library selected Power Term InterConnect to access its integrated library system. According to Ericom, Power Term InterConnect is a terminal emulation product that will allow PCs to run applications sitting on large systems, and allow organizations to standardize on a single host access solution. It also allows terminal emulation of a wide range of terminal types and platforms, the company said.
The Toronto Public Library said it will use Power Term InterConnect to handle the circulation of over 25 million items, as well as more than 600,000 items that are acquired, catalogued and processes in a year.
According to Ian Stegman, manager of technology infrastructure for the Toronto Public Library, in searching for a product to link 98 locations and more than 1,100 PCs throughout Toronto, Power Term InterConnect had more to offer than competing products.
“The support we found from Ericom during our testing and evaluation was far superior than the other products we were looking at,” Stegman said.
Stegman said other products the Library considered had similar functionality, but he added that the look was “a bit prettier.”
“Did Power Term blow the other (products) out of the water? Functionality-wise Power Term had probably as much (to offer) as the others.” However, Stegman added, “We are creating some specialized scripts and function keys, and (with Power Term) we are able to customize colours and screens. It’s a better package and has a lot more goodies.”
Eran Heyman, Ericom’s CEO, said there is a technological problem in running applications sitting on large computer systems.
“For example, with the library applications, they are running the procedures of searching for books, doing registration for books, and doing all the other activities of the library, and they are all running on other large systems,” Heyman said. “The purpose of terminal emulation is to enable users of PCs to run such applications residing on those large systems.”
Heyman said Power Term InterConnect can be configured to allow only certain users to gain access to certain library applications.
Stegman said the FTP (file transfer protocol), which will allow the Toronto Public Library’s staff to download their PC back-up files to their host server when the Integrated Library System is unavailable, was a major deciding factor.
“In the past we had problems with other products not being able to do what we wanted function-wise,” Stegman said, adding that at this point, Power Term has met the Library team’s expectations.
Stegman said the Library only recently received Power Term and will begin to roll it out in early 2001.
Ericom is on the Web at www.ericom.com., while the Toronto Public Library is at www.tpl.toronto.com.