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The world’s most iconic library calls service a “life-saver”

SEATTLE – June 25, 2010 – The iconic Bibliotheca Alexandrina, world renowned for redefining library service, is innovating again with the adoption of the Summon™ web-scale discovery service. Egypt’s new library of Alexandria will use the service to modernize access to its expansive collections, creating a simple, obvious starting point for users. The Summon™ service, launched in 2009 by Serials Solutions, addresses a major barrier between libraries and users by enabling an integrated search of all types of content—print, digital and every format in between – from a single search box. 

“Summon is a life saver for our users,” said Dr. Sohair F. Wastawy, former Chief Librarian of Bibliotheca Alexandrina. “Searching the many resources we offer in addition to the Bibliotheca Alexandrina OPAC with a simple search, exemplifies one of the most important principles in libraries: ease of use. We are just glad there is a great solution that put an end to the confusion of using multiple resources.”

Bibliotheca Alexandrina is designed to recapture the spirit of openness and scholarship of the world-famous original library, which was lost to fire in approximately 46 B.C.  The Summon™ service performs a unique, organizing point between users and the library’s millions of books and digital works. Because the Summon™ service can index any format, it can capture even local artifacts from the library’s four museums.  Bibliotheca Alexandrina is among the scores of libraries in 14 countries that are embracing the service for its ability to deliver easy, fast and simple discovery – global growth that’s supported by 15 language options for the user interface.

New features will include innovative MARC Mapping tool and configurations that enable libraries to leverage their brands

Launched officially just a year ago, the Summon™ service has been on a fast track for not only library adoptions, but development as well. On the heels of its debut of Database Recommender, which directs users to sources that don’t lend themselves to easy indexing, the service will launch another unique tool – MARC Mapping, which is now being tested at a variety of universities. This tool, which will be available to all customers shortly through the Summon™ administration console and linked from the Client Center, will allow libraries to map their MARC metadata directly from their catalog records, enabling them to instantly see how their records will appear in the Summon service.  Further, Dublin Core metadata will also be able to be linked, providing a view into how Institutional Repositories that use the DC metadata standard appear in the service. 

More new features include the capability for the library to configure the user interface for brand enhancement allowing institutions to add their logo and color palette to the Summon interface. This allows Summon to seamlessly integrate with their other websites.  It also enables libraries to determine their search limiters and which facets to display, customizing the service for their communities.  Plus, the Summon service has added an auto-complete function that further aligns it with Open Web search experiences and puts it ahead of other library discovery services.

JSTOR and CABI join the continually growing number of content providers

The Summon™ service is built on an entirely new technology architecture that pre-harvests content in a massive single index.  Top-tier academic providers JSTOR and CABI are among the most recent to join the service’s 6,800 participating sources.  In JSTOR’s case, the metadata for the content in the archive will be included in the Summon index, while CABI will enable its full-text content to be directly indexed by Serials Solutions.  With more than a half-billion records from 94,000 journals, the technology enables sub-second searches and true relevancy ranking, ensuring complete content neutrality and unbiased results. 


About Serials Solutions

Founded by a librarian for librarians in 2000, Serials Solutions is the global leader in E-Resource Access and Management Services (ERAMS) that serves more than 3,000 libraries of all sizes and types. Serials Solutions® KnowledgeWorks, the authoritative e-resource knowledgebase, is the foundation for Serials Solutions® 360, the only complete and integrated e-resource access and management solution. The company also recently introduced the Summon™ web-scale discovery service, a revolutionary tool that provides instant access to the full breadth of the library’s collection through a single search.


Serials Solutions is the primary source for the AquaBrowser® discovery layer as well as™ and Ulrich’s Serials Analysis System™.  It provides fast implementation, easy customization, and outstanding value to libraries throughout the world.

Serials Solutions is a business unit of ProQuest LLC.

About ProQuest

ProQuest creates specialized information resources and technologies that propel successful research, discovery, and lifelong learning.  A global leader in serving libraries of all types, ProQuest offers the expertise of such respected brands as UMI®, Chadwyck-Healey™, SIRS®, and eLibrary®.  With Serials Solutions®, Ulrich’s™, RefWorks®, COS™, Dialog® and now Bowker® part of the ProQuest brand family, the company supports the breadth of the information community with innovative discovery solutions that power the business of books and the best in research experience. 

More than a content provider or aggregator, ProQuest is an information partner, creating indispensable research solutions that connect people and information.  Through innovative, user-centered discovery technology, ProQuest offers billions of pages of global content that includes historical newspapers, dissertations, and uniquely relevant resources for researchers of any age and sophistication—including content not likely to be digitized by others.  Inspired by its customers and their end users, ProQuest is working toward a future that blends information accessibility with community to further enhance learning and encourage lifelong enrichment.

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25 June 2010

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Christine Goetz
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