VALA2006 Session 15 Brooks

VALA2006If you can’t buy it, build it: adapting a generic commercial application to meet specific organisation goals

VALA 2006 CONCURRENT SESSION 15: Application Customisation and Open Source
Friday 10 February 2006, 14:35 – 15:05
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VALA Peer Reviewed PaperTony Brooks

Training/Website Services Officer, City Library, Melbourne, Victoria

Zan Li

IT Services Officer, City Library, Melbourne, Victoria

Sarah Field

Information Services Coordinator, City Library, Melbourne, Victoria

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What do you do if you need solutions to ensure the equitable use of computing facilities in a public context, have pre-purchased a commercial package to ensure this happens but realised that due to software compatibility issues beyond your control it will not function at present? The answer for City Library was to utilise the technical, logistical and project management skills that existed in-house, use a Microsoft product and transform it into a robust automated computer booking system with the features that were needed in less than three months. This paper outlines the steps that were taken by the City Library Information Services Team in developing that system including the strategic, technical, training and operational challenges that were encountered and how they were overcome.