8th CDS/ISIS Users Group Meet - A Report



The 8th CDS/ISIS Users Group Meet of two-day duration, organized by Ahmedabad Library Network (ADINET) and sponsored by National Information System for Science & Technology (NISSAT), Department of Scientific & Industrial Research (DSIR), Government of India, began on 14th December 2000 at ATIRA at 10.00 AM by paying homage to late Shri S R Thakore, the then Honorary Director and founder member of ADINET by observing one minute silence. The Meet was attended by over 50 participants drawn from various states in India.

Shri Pramod Kumar, Director, INFLIBNET and Honorary Secretary, ADINET welcomed the invitees and participants to the Meet. In his welcome address, he highlighted the importance and benefits of such a user meet.

Dr Kartikey Sarabhai, Chairman, ADINET Council, delivered the presidential address. In his address, he lauded the yeoman's service rendered by Shri Thakore as Honorary Director and emphasized that more and more librarians would have to actively participate in strengthening ADINET. He reminded that ADINET belongs to librarians and they should rightfully own it and come forward to serve the community effectively.

Mrs. Sreedevi Ravindran, Director, NISSAT explained the structure of the two-day programme and requested the participants to come up with new suggestions to help promote the use of CDS/ISIS. She also outlined the efforts made by NISSAT in promoting CDS/ISIS in India as a nodal agency of Unesco.

The Meet was declared open by Dr M M Gharia, Director, ATIRA. In his inaugural address, he highlighted the role that the city networks can play in promoting the use of information. He opined that technology has minimized efforts in accessing information and it has become handy. Libraries should effectively use the same to serve its users.

Prof A Neelameghan, an outstanding teacher and international expert traced the history and growth of CDS/ISIS. He also mentioned his involvement in training in CDS/ISIS in different countries of the world as a Unesco expert . He outlined the strengths of various versions of CDS/ISIS and felt that we need to have an innovative method of imparting the practical training in CDS/ISIS.


Session I: Status of CDS/ISIS and its Resources

The Session began immediately after the tea break with Prof Neelameghan on the chair. The first session witnessed the presentation of two papers.

The first paper, basically a status report on the use of Micro ISIS in India: 2000, was presented by Mrs. Ravindran, Director, NISSAT. This paper gave the overview of NISSAT's efforts and initiatives in promoting CDS/ISIS in India. At present, more than 1725 institutions are using the licensed version of CDS/ISIS in India. Of these institutions, 40% are in the northern India. So far more than 200 courses on CDS/ISIS have been conducted in India with the support of NISSAT imparting training to more than 4300 professionals. Mrs. Ravindran also informed that the work towards bringing out Windows and LAN versions of library management software based on ISIS is assigned to Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore.

The second paper on `CDS/ISIS resources on Internet' presented by Shri Vimal Kumar Varun is basically a reference source. The sources included are: CDS/ISIS user forum, CDS/ISIS utilities developed by various individuals and institutions, Electronic discussion list, INFOISIS _ magazine on CDS/ISIS, Various versions of CDS/ISIS, Web interfaces, CDS/ISIS home page, CDS/ISIS databases on Internet, etc. The full-length paper is included in this issue at p.16-23.

Session II: Institutional Experience 1

Mrs. Ravindran chaired the Session. In this Session, there were in all three presentations.

The first presentation was made by Shri B P Chauhan of Thapar Centre forIndustrial Research and Development (TCIRD), Patiala. His paper described the six databases created at TCIRD and their experiences with both the versions [DOS & Windows] of the software.

Shri Apurba Kanjilal of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Sriharikota highlighted in his presentation the experience of using CDS/ISIS for creating bibliographic and factual databases and providing Web access on the Intranet. He described various Web-based tools that had been used to access the database created using CDS/ISIS.

Shri Sailesh Yagnik from Mudra Institute of Communications (MICA), Ahmedabad in his presentation shared his experiences as to the exploitation of the features of both DOS and Windows versions of the CDS/ISIS for his library automation. MICA library has extensively used CDS/ISIS for creating not only bibliographic databases, but also non-bibliographic databases such as TV commercials and advertisements.

Session III: Institutional Experience 2

Mrs. Ravindran chaired this session also. The Session comprising three presentations was devoted to institutional experiences.

The first presentation was made by Shri G Manjunath from Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research (IGIDR), Mumbai. In this presentation, Shri Manjunath shared his experience about the creation of union catalogue of journals and Web hosting of the same, managing publications mailing list with Pascal interface, and creating accession list in HTML. He demonstrated the same on second day after the lunch.

Shri Raghuram of Madurai Kamaraj University (MKU), Madurai made a presentation basing his paper on `Database activities using CDS/ISIS & WINISIS: a review'. He described his experience in creating various bibliographic databases. The highlight of the paper was the creation of a database for biological sequences.

The third presentation was by Shri VS Cholion of INFLIBNET, Ahmedabad. His presentation focused on the work done at INFLIBNET using CDS/ISIS particularly in the catalogue card generation; authentication of records received from universities; removal of duplicate records; and handling of various union catalogues (bibliographic and non-bibliographic).

Session IV: Tutorial

The session was chaired by Mrs. Ravindran of NISSAT.

The second day of the Meet began with the presentation of a paper by Prof Neelameghan on `TUTOR+: learning and teaching package on hypertext link commands in WINISIS' co-authored with Ms. S K Lalitha. The paper focused on the work done at Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore and highlighted the strengths of WINISIS.

The main focus was, of course, on the TUTOR+. Prof Neelameghan also outlined the work done by Institute of Information Studies (IIS) in creating a CD containing Dr S R Ranganathan's works, lectures, letters and other related informational items numbering over 3,500 items, and a complete bibliography of his writings. The CD also includes image and voice of Dr SR Ranganathan.

Session V: CDS/ISIS Applications

The session was chaired by Prof. Neelameghan of IIS, Bangalore.

The fifth session had two presentations. Shri Francis Jayakanth from National Centre for Science Information (NCSI), Bangalore spoke on the `Usage of WWWISIS for Circulation Manager' in the NCSI Library. The paper co-authored with Ms. Lalitha gave an overview of the tools and techniques used for the purpose.

The second presentation by Dr T S Kumbar from INFLIBNET, Ahmedabad focused on INFLIBNET and the library management software package_ SOUL developed by INFLIBNET. The presentation was followed by a demo of the package.


Immediately after the technical sessions, an open house discussion was held under the joint stewardship of Prof Neelameghan and Mrs Ravindran, where new suggestions, recommendations from the participants were invited and discussed at length. Some of the important and viable suggestions received during this Session and endorsed by the participants in the form of recommendations are given below:

The Meet ended with the proposing of vote of thanks by Shri Vimal Kumar Varun of NISSAT.

— Reported by Dr. TS Kumbar, INFLIBNET, Ahmedabad
and Dr. (Ms.) Daksha Surati,Department of Library Science, Gujarat University, Ahmedabad.

Information Today & Tomorrow, Vol. 20, No. 1, March 2001, p.14-p.15