In 2019, we happily celebrated the 30th anniversary of our company, which was established in March 1989. Our business was set up to automate and support IT systems for corporate libraries and we remain totally focused on this sphere of business, developing information management solutions for corporate special libraries and archives.
In 1994 when the internet was just starting to appear, we experimented with php (a general-purpose scripting language) and the idea of a web site, trying to figure out how it could benefit library automation. At the same time, we were in the midst of Microsoft Windows and Windows NT being rolled out to the desktop PC. Technology was in flux and constantly changing. Exciting times, but a challenge to know which way the wind would blow.
Information management fundamentals haven’t changed
Over the years, we have seen corporate libraries close, change their status, and morph into knowledge management or information resource services. But the fundamentals haven’t changed. The corporate library is a valuable tool for decision-makers who need accurate, validated information at their fingertips. As long as there is an overload of published information, a dominant feature of an advanced economy, there is a need for librarians and other types of knowledge curators.
Our experience is one of constant demand from clients for the best and latest technologies in their systems and information platforms. We believe that there are more opportunities today for us as a company than when we started in 1989. Database technologies have changed and there is a more sophisticated end user and while communication technologies improve and the web keeps expanding, we see new ideas, innovations and the power of the microchip presenting more ways to harness and use information.
One thing remains constant. The need to filter and distil information. Looking for data now is fast. The volume of data that is now returned and the extent to which it is relevant or truthful and can be relied upon, demands libraries be the trusted guardians.
A good path to take
In the late-90s we witnessed a massive increase in the volume of data, and the reach of the internet presented us with new challenges as we embraced a web-based environment. The introduction of the iPhone in June 2007 opened up new markets and expanded the reach of users to even more information. Our optimism and decision to focus on serving libraries with new product development proved to be a good path to take, even after 2008 when the world’s financial collapse threatened to knock us off course. We maintained our determination to develop great software and meet the challenges of the past decade head on. For that we are grateful to all of our clients, old and new. We couldn’t have reached such a milestone without your support.
In the future what will be…
What will ten years hence look like? We firmly believe that libraries will continue to be an essential aid to management in corporate and government enterprises. It’s just too important a task not to have the best means at your disposal to filter and identify the right data and sources. New technologies such as AI and Blockchain will make their mark in the years ahead and we will see a move to use more distributed architectures.
We can be sure that as organisations find new challenges and need to make ever more informed decisions, librarians and libraries will play a vital role in the life cycle of information.