John Brice, a northwestern Pennsylvania native, wears the dual hats of both library Director for the Meadville Public Library2 and Chief Executive Officer of the Crawford County Federated Library System with 9 member libraries. During his 23 year tenure tenure John has integrated the latest Library Information Technology into the nine libraries in rural Crawford County, which by the way, was the birthplace of the oil industry. Starting in 1999, with an internet router project, Crawford County has been using open source software solutions in all of his back-end IT infrastructure projects and converted its ILS over to Koha in 2005. In addition to using open source software CCFLS, through its on staff developer, has initiated the Libki project, which is a library based Kiosk management program that allows patron authentication through SIP2 and monitors patron usage of the Internet. John has written a number of articles about using open source software in small rural libraries and a complete listing of all the articles along with the open software being used in Crawford County can be found at meadvillelibrary.org/os4.

10 days later

What kind of open source licenses do you prefer? What licenses have you found that you felt weren't really open?

John talked about warning signs for a project that really isn't open source. I wonder what those warning signs are...

Building on Laura Blanchard's summarizing tweet ("To get the most out of open source software, get to know the OS community and see where you can contribute."), do you have a plan or a pattern or a mindset when approaching a new community?

Equinox has a fully hosted and supported client (Evergreen ILS) who continues to see yearly savings of 70% (yes, 70%) over what they paid with their previous closed source vended ILS solution. So it's still possible to save money with open source even if you go with a fully hosted/supported solution. But, as John says, your mileage may vary.

8 days later

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