Friday, December 4, 2009

The cost effectiveness of Open Source for HLT

Horowhenua Library Trust recently underwent a review and one of the recommendations raised in the final report was to assess the cost effectiveness of Koha and Kete for Horowhenua Library Trust. The tables above tells the story really.

But you can view the whole slideshow below.
coz it makes no sense without painting a picture first :)
In 1983 I was quoted $3,000 to have a wedding dress made by a bridal shop in Wellington – no way my Mum could afford that dress. We would have to make it

So we went into Fitzroy’s, an old fashioned draper's shop in Levin, and within minutes of hearing that I was marrying a local lad, “Nancy’s boy”, we were surrounded by a clutch of woman: comparing fabrics, discussing how to adapt the paper pattern, which lace, what size seed pearls etc … I’m sure you get the picture. That dress turned out heaps better than anything I was thinking of – and saved us a fortune too!

That was my first grownup experience of crowd-sourcing, group think, community consultation, collaborative design – call it what you will. What I learnt that day was the power of community ownership, adaptation and the sheer power of collaboration.These are key concepts in the open source world.


Erik the Tall said...

Hi Joann,
I gotta say I doubt your figures. I'm a Koha fan but the figures your quoting on the commercial side I think are way off.

Quick math
1998 Sirsi Unicorn purchased for my system for 190k titles and 50k of patrons. Cost roughly 100k, i think it was 108k but 100k is easier for math.

First year maintenance covered by initial contract.

10 years of maintenance at an overestimate of 10k a year, currently it's at 9k, but the second year 7.5k seems to stick in my memory. I'll use 10k for estimate.

10k * 10years = 100k + 100k = 200k

I honestly believe the OSS Koha is cheaper but I think the scale your comparing at is flawed.

Joann Ransom said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Joann Ransom said...

Hi Erik,

The figures truly are extraordinary I agree.

The $225 - $400 included having to replace hardware. With Koha we were able to keep running on the old 386s we had been running, although we did have to purchase 1 server.

I guess the only other thing to offer as partial explanation is that these prices are $NZ dollars and many time sover the last decade $NZD2 = roughly $USD1.
Thanks for commenting,

Cheers Jo.

Erik the Tall said...

I did not take into account replacing PC's mainly because I think we would have had to do that regardless of the ILS.

I did check the exchange rate and at the time of our switch the USD was nearly twice the value of NZD.

Adding in workstation hardware costs associated with a new ILS and the difference in currencies I think the figures would be much closer to agreement.

I do think my figure would still be less for my commercial system. However at this point I'm willing to call the comparison moot on cost.

Anonymous said...

The other point you have missed out Erik, is that prices are different country to county.

Also a huge factor is the fact HLT would have had to buy for hideously expensive amounts ISDN lines to run any of the proprietary systems.