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     This is being cross-posted to BUSLIB-L, ARLIS-L, GEONET-L, GOVDOC-L,
     MEDLIB-L, AND PACS-L.  Apologies for the duplication.
 
 
     SUMMARY OF DB/TEXTWORKS (INMAGIC WINDOWS VERSION)
 
     Hello all, and thanks to those who responded.
 
     With the special upgrade deadline fast approaching, here is the
     summary as promised.  I received 21 responses in all:  four included
     good information and the rest were requests for a summary of the
     information.  I did not receive any negative comments.
 
     Here goes:
 
     In evaluating competing library softwares, we liked the DOS version
     enough to volunteer as a beta test site for dbText in hopes that it
     would be equally as functional.  After many betas (2-4-6) and
     considerable testing and evaluation, i'm really looking forward to the
     commercial release :]
 
     The data migration is incredibly easy. You load dbText as a
     subdirectory under Windows, then select the appropriate Inmagic
     textbase you'd like to open.  dbText will prompt you with any
     questions (loading database field tags or field names) as it
     incorporates the basic structure of the reports, search screens, and
     index choices already existing in your Inmagic database.
 
     Usability is dependant on your willingness to learn a completely new
     system.  The "look" of dbText is entirely different from the DOS
     version, but with a little practice searches, updates, and
     modifications can be performed with suprising ease.  Some functions,
     like the browsable word/phrase indices, are still present.  Many
     underlying functions present in the DOS version, while appearing very
     different to the dbText
     user, are still essentially the same.  In testing inexperienced users,
     it seems to take a comparable amount of time to get them performing
     effective
     searches on either dbText or the DOS version.  Many of the advantages
     of dbText are only appreciated in the advanced stages of database
     development.  Features like the quasi-relational ability to link
     databases through shared fields is very valuable to us, but is only
     appreciated by most users after they've developed and used their first
     databases.
 
     In summary, the usability of the DOS Inmagic is paralleled by the same
     ease of use in dbText.  This is not to say that it's any easier to
     move from
     the DOS version to dbText than it is to migrate from any other
     database platform.  Each is so different from the other that it's like
     learning a new system. Fortunately, neither is terribly difficult to
     learn.
     Both end-user searching and database maintainence can be learned by
     the minimally computer literate.  If you're looking for a solid,
     text-oriented database running under Windows, dbText appears to be a
     good choice.
 
     If you'd like to get better acquainted with dbText before making your
     decision, contact Crew-Noble Information Services @(510) 837-1399.
     They're the authorized Inmagic dealers/trainers on the west coast
     (Danville, CA) and they're currently conducting free seminars
     introducing dbText to new/experienced Inmagic users.
 
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     I did beta-testing and basically followed their directions for
     transfer of data.  They are quite simple.  It went fine.  I
     transferred my library catalog (I did not use circulation module, just
     basic cataloging).  The structure is theirs with significant additions
     to suit my purposes.  Basically, if you do not follow their
     dicrections about copying of the structure and transferring data, and
     you prefer to do it from scratch, you create a similar structure in
     the Windows-based package and then import records which you have
     exported from the DOS-based database.  The new version reads the same
     ASCII files, it seams to me.  I had a MARC adaptor program and if you
     do not change anything in the structure in the new version, it would
     go fine.
 
     I liked their DOS version, I like their Windows version.  You can also
     import documents with the new version, which is of great help to me.
 
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     We went ahead and ordered the upgrade sight unseen because (1) we've
     been so pleased with the ease-of-use and power of the software in the
     past; (2) cheaper to upgrade now than later; (3) we're a Windows shop;
     (4) some of the new features, like increased number of fields and more
     of a (semi-)relational database, are things we would use.
 
     Their flyer, and my conversation with InMagic, state that we will need
     to run existing databases (structures, reports, etc.) thru an "easy"
     conversion routine to make them useable in TextWorks. The old and new
     products will not be able to share the same database.
 
     One problem with it is that the search-only equivalent, SearchWorks,
     wasn't expected to ship until maybe 4+ weeks after TextWorks. And once
     you convert the databases for use with TextWorks, they won't be able
     to be used by the older SearchMagic product.
 
     If that is still the case, I guess I'll probably install quickly
     anyway. Our SearchMagic users are relatively few since we have
     auxiliary functions, like acquisitions & storage inventory, running on
     InMagic and not our OPAC.
 
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     And this one:
 
     There is a listserv for INMAGIC users... address to subscribe:
     [log in to unmask] message: subscribe inmagic-users [your mail
     address]
 
     Note that this list is controlled by INMAGIC !!
 
 
 
 
     Hope that helps somewhat.
 
     Kelli
 
 
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          Kelli Ham                            !
          Assistant Librarian                  ! Old librarians don't
          Pacific-Sierra Research Corporation  ! lose their memory;
          2901 28th Street, Suite 300          ! rather,they recall
          Santa Monica, CA 90405               ! things with precision!
          (310)314-2346                        !
          [log in to unmask]                 !
 
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