Saturday, June 27, 2009

Koha in the latest Code4Lib Journal #7

How hard can it be? : developing in open source

Over recent years, Horowhenua Library Trust (HLT) has been receiving a steady trickle of enquiries and surveys from Library students the world over wanting to know about the development of Koha. What were the conditions and mindset that allowed a little public library in Levin, NZ to not only imagine they could, but actually develop the world's first open source library management system?

So, with help from Chris Cormack, the main brain behind Koha, and Rosalie Blake, the guts and courage, I have written our journey up and it was published today in issue 7 of the Code4Lib journal.

From the introduction:

"We were a very ordinary public library in New Zealand, we had hardly any money and a library management system that was going to stop working on 1st January 2000 …. What else could we have done? And how hard could it be anyway? The librarians would tell the programmers how a library works and they would make it so. And we weren’t going to make a big deal of this ok; 3 months is loads of time."

I do want to thank Andrew Darby from the Code4Lib editorial board for his wise and patient guidance and advice which meant getting our story published wasn't that hard at all!

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