Sorry Ossifer, ALEPH my ID in my other pants – Implementation Update #12, Oct. 16, 2005

Sorry Ossifer, ALEPH my ID in my other pants – Implementation Update #12, Oct. 16, 2005

I’m just taking a break from constructing my Ark, rounding up the pairs, and thought I’d send out an update. Taking a look at the calendar (which I try not to do these days) shows that we have slightly less than three months until the Big Day. My son tells me I’m wrong, that the Big Day is a little more than two months away. But I think his math is faulty. January 9th – STP – is clearly about three months away. Maybe he is referring to some other Big Day. The Database Freeze date on December 9th maybe? That must be it.

Data load 2 Conversion Testing
Functional testing

Data Load 2 Conversion Testing

The Data Migration team completed the data conversion testing for the second load and their reports are available on the DMT page if you’re interested in seeing the outstanding problems. Happily the number of conversion errors has significantly decreased from the numbers in the first load; from 40 or 50 per module down to 9 or 10.

Hats off to the DMT for all their work!


Circulation has finished designing their notices and we are ready to start testing the actual scheduling and printing/emailing of the notices through overnight batch jobs. Dylan, Fred and I have picked a “volunteer” for the testing, but since we haven’t told SMU yet I can’t tell you . – oops. Acquisitions has had some initial meetings and will be working with Fred on modifying their notices in the coming weeks. Dylan is continuing work on writing the new reports we will require.

Since I already took my hat off to the DMT: Coats off to the Notice/Report people!

Web OPAC Customization

The Customization team has released their design to the full OPAC committee for comments in preparation for making the beta design available to all of you. We are on schedule for a mid-November release. We will be looking for comments on both the look and feel as well as functionality. Although there is not time for major structural changes now (Reference and Instruction people need time to develop material before January) small changes will be possible. We will be gathering suggestions and comments from you and all our users over the coming months and will revisit the design in the summer.

Shoes off to the OCT for all their work!

The last major piece of the implementation puzzle – staff training, began last week. Its scheduled to run through until the end of November. I sat in on the first Circulation and Acquisition sessions and it was great to see the trainers and trainees working together to explore what their modules can do and how to fit our workflows into ALEPH. When you attend your session, I encourage you to actively participate and take advantage of the knowledge and experience of your trainers and fellow trainees. The Training Coordination team and the trainers have done a great job organizing sessions for the 300 staff in Novanet .

So – Socks off to the TCT!

Functional Testing

We’ve done quite a bit of data conversion testing over the past few months, but we have barely scratched the surface on functional testing. This is where you come in. Once you get your module training we need you to go back to your office and take as many opportunities as you can to work in ALEPH. Catalogue a serial or a monograph, place a recall, register a patron, order a book, pay for serial subscription, sign out books. It is very important that we try all of the processes that we do every day now. If you don’t already have a GUI client installed on your machine and a username and password for ALEPH, please ask your IT functional contact. The more adventurous of you can visit the client download page

We have come a long way in fine tuning the data transfer to ALEPH, but we’ve only just touched the surface on fine tuning the tables that control how ALEPH works. We have a two month window of opportunity to work out some of the bugs now, instead of when we are live in January. Discuss your findings with your co-workers and report issues to your functional contact. The more issues we resolve now, the smoother the transition to working with ALEPH in January will be.

In anticipation of all the help you will provide with functional testing – Shirts off to you all!

I’m starting to get cold here, so I better sign off and quit thanking people.

I’ll leave you with two things:

The first is: ALEPH Road Show – the Sequel ! Dylan and I are starting to organize site visits for the week of Nov. 21. This will be a chance for us to tell where we are in the implementation and for you to ask questions and provide feedback before we go live in January.

The other is a bad library joke.

A man goes into a library and asks for a book on suicide.
The librarian says; “No way, you won’t bring it back.”

Back to the Ark construction. Does anybody know where I can get two hippopotami – cheap?