Back in March I noted that the January 2011 issue of Library Technology Reports was dedicated to Web Scale Discovery Services. Well folks, I finally made the time to read that issue, and if your library is considering Web Scale Discovery you must read it too! Note that LTR is available in Academic Search Complete and Academic OneFile, so you may already have access to the issue.
Jason Vaughan, Director of Library Technologies at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, does an excellent job over 60 pages of summarizing the history and need for Web Scale Discovery Systems, and takes an in-depth look at 4 of the 5 major players in this arena, OCLC WorldCat Local, Serials Solutions Summon, Ebsco Discovery Services, and Ex Libris Primo Central. He states,
The primary goal of this work is to provide a valuable foundation to libraries that wish to know more about library-focused Web scale discovery services and to aid libraries contemplating a marketplace review for the local environment. It does not presume that the reader is familiar with any of these services, nor will the report delve into extreme technical detail.
I think in the long run what will prove to be the most valuable part of the report is chapter 7, Questions to Consider, where Jason provides 40 question you should ask of library vendors when seeking more information about their Web scale discovery services. A damn fine place to start.
Excellent report Jason, thanks!