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Library System Turns 15 This Month

March 18, 2016

The Integrated Library system, Voyager went live 15 years ago this month, but not with out its share of trials and tribulations.

What were you doing 15 years ago? Maybe you were watching Christoval native Colby Donaldson’s performance on the reality show, Survivor.

We were doing some other things at the Porter Henderson Library 15 years ago, besides watching Colby on TV.

In February and March, 2001, the Library completed the migration from the mainframe-based NOTIS integrated library system (ILS) to the Voyager ILS.

Some staff members from that momentous year are still here:

  • Dr. Maurice Fortin, Executive Director of Library Services;
  • Angela Skaggs, Assistant Director for Access Services (formerly Head of Circulation);
  • Mark Allan, Assistant Director for Research and Instruction Services (formerly Head of Reference);
  • Suzanne Campbell, Head of Special Collections and Programs;
  • Lynette Ott, Library Assistant in Acquisitions/Serials (who just retired at the end of February);
  • Sharon Weber, Library Assistant for Interlibrary Loan (formerly Library Assistant in Cataloging);
  • Janetta Paschal, Head of Library Technical Services (formerly Government Documents/Reference Librarian and Library Coordinator for the migration project)

Some of the important dates and “whew” moments, during this process are highlighted below.

  • February 5 – All cataloging activity on NOTIS ceased
  • February 6 – Acquisitions ordering activity stopped, although serials staff continued to check-in serial issues in NOTIS.
  • Mid-February – Endeavor personnel loaded the production data into the Voyager system for the testing phase. We made some corrections to the data mapping file.
  • The cataloging librarian uncovered a problem with the item barcodes, which would have caused a major mess if not corrected. The cause? A file of 60,000+ items barcodes had been overlooked and not loaded.  <whew!>
  • At 5:00, February 23, 2001, we accepted the production load of the bibliographic data.
  • Also on February 23, the patron records and vendor records were loaded. After testing, they were accepted on February 26.
  • Between February 27 and March 7, the Acquisitions Librarian created the ledgers and funds in Voyager acquisitions.
  • March 8 – The order data was loaded.
  • The Acquisitions Librarian discovered the fund balance information to be totally out of whack. Thankfully, Jana Fast, our Endeavor contact person reviewed all of the order data and uncovered a glitch on one record that had the acquisitions staff and Janetta laughing. According to the data load, we supposedly had 801 copies of a particular journal! Jana talked the Acquisitions Librarian through the steps to correct the order.  <whew, again>
  • Spring Break, mid-week – Circulation on NOTIS stopped at the end of the day.
  • March 15-16 – Circulation staff had additional training.
  • March 18 – Students returned to campus and the Library to find a drastically new look to RamCat: a web-based one, with a graphic interface, that would support accessing online resources. (The graph below shows how much access to online resources in RamCat has grown in 15 years.)
  • March 31 – Graduation Day! The Library officially graduated to regular customer service with Endeavor. The migration journey was complete

For more information, see “NOTIS to Voyager: How the Library Moved from There to Here” (Faculty Newsletter , v. 5, no. 5, March, 2001, pages 4-5) available in the ASU Digital Repository at

This issue also contains more information about happenings at the Library in March 2001, including how to search in the “new RamCat” and a GPO inspection of the Library’s depository collection operations.

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