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IT Services Group

Photograph of the IT services group
From left: Janet Cropper (group manager), Robert Drinkall, Gregor Thomson, Duncan Cooper, Keith Lye

Since almost every aspect of library life in the 21st century has an IT component, the IT Services Group is involved in all areas of Library Services' operations.

A major responsibility is Aleph, the Library's management system, of which the web catalogue, eUCLid, is the public face. Aleph is used on a daily basis by just about every member of library staff and has recently been upgraded (see the article Looking at eUCLid). A major challenge over the next year will be to extend Aleph to those recently-merged library sites which

currently have their own, independent, systems and it is hoped that this will be achieved by the end of 2002. SSEES is the most recent addition to the UCL family of libraries: dovetailing their adoption of Aleph with this summer's upgrade has presented a number of problems which have been overcome by the hard work and goodwill of all concerned. Keith Lye is the Group member with primary responsibility for Aleph.

Another recent development has been making available the ELIB suite of databases in Windows NT (they were previously only available in Windows 3.1). Duncan Cooper specified, designed and implemented the new service and is a good example of the co-operation that takes place between Library Services and UCL's Information Systems department. Although formally a member of library staff, Duncan works on a day-to-day basis in the Operating Systems Group of IS. Serving two masters, he manages successfully to keep both happy.

One of Rob Drinkall's main responsibilities is the Library's web presence. He maintains the Library Services website (http://www.ucl.ac.uk/library) and has been deeply involved in designing the new eUCLid catalogue, giving a UCL look-and-feel to the basic Aleph product.

Gregor Thomson, our newest recruit, is about to take on a new role providing support to users in the major new PC cluster on the ground floor of the Science Library (DMS Watson Building). Gregor's experience in training library staff in IT-related areas will be invaluable in his new job. He will also continue to be responsible for the electronic exam papers service.

When time allows, members of the Group also provide IT support for the many projects being undertaken within Library Services. A good example is MASC25, an initiative to provide a comprehensive electronic resource guide to special collections in the M25 area (see Newsletter, issue 5, February 2001)

Content by Janet Cropper

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