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Telematics for Libraries - Projects


Updated: 23 APR 98

Project Number and Title
3132 - Document and Library Integration
Programme/Action line Call Topic(s) Start End Project Duration
in Months
FP 3/ III Theme 21 January 1995 December 1996 24
Keywords: SR; multimedia; X.400; document access/delivery (electronic)

blue bullet Additional information is available from the DALI web site . (

Integrating access to networks and electronic document/resources for the delivery of new library services (Theme 21)
Project description
The DALI project developped, piloted and evaluated a service for multimedia document delivery in a distributed environment, using SR. The service provided intelligent user support within a library based infrastructure. Authorisation and cost recovery is supported.
The project:
  • Developped a modular software package with an "open service provider" architecture. This enables incorporation of existing standards and international standards, trying to provide a seamless migration path between them; enhanced ISO SR service to access distributed catalogue information through both direct real-time searches and stored searches (SDI based);
  • Provided a set of request delivery options ranging from postal to electronic document delivery using directory and e-mail service standards;
  • Investigated the problems in the delivery of a pilot service from the viewpoint of both libraries and users, including copyright issues.
This multimedia document delivery service was based on a open services architecture incorporating different protocols. The service accommodated users with low cost hardware and network connectivity and will be presented through a familiar graphical user interface. It will support delivery direct to the desktop, via fax or using the postal service.
Technical approach
The project was based on the results from other projects in the same area and was, to a large extend, based on existing software components. The challenge was to integrate these software components and to set up an architecture where these components interwork.
The project was divided into nine workpackages:
  • State-of-the-art assessment in relevant technological, library and commercial areas;
  • Service and system specification of both functionality - supported access methods, language support, delivery methods - and technology - authorisation and cost recovery mechanisms, user and service directory profiles;
  • Design and selection of software - overall design and appropriate software packages;
  • Implementation of subsystems;
  • Testing and integration ;
  • Intra-project trials and evaluation at three sites;
  • Mount document catalogues ;
  • Pilot service operation with document suppliers, service providers and end-users;
  • Impact assessment and dissemination of results.
Key issues
  • To set up, pilot and evaluate a service for multimedia document delivery;
  • To integrate different systems, supporting different protocols and architectures;
  • To combine catalogue searches with multimedia document delivery.
Impact and results
DALI provided, in three countries, a prototype SR-based search, retrieve and multimedia document delivery service, accessible by a number of communications systems and capable of accessing a number of servers, both local and remote. These servers are maintained by European domain specialists and publishers.
The service was focused on the domains of oceanography (marine & aquatic science and technology) but it will be possible to replicate the system in other domains.
The project promoted the positive positioning of libraries and librarians in the context of distributed delivery services and the exploitation of information highways as gateways to networked catalogues.
The main deliverable was the prototype modular software operational at three sites in three different countries. Certain technical reports and specifications, are restricted issue, but in the public domain are reports on:
  • the Project handbook,
  • State-of-the-art assessments;
  • Network charging information;
  • Availability and profile of information servers;
  • Input to standards groups;
  • System specification,
  • System architecture and identification of appropriate software,
  • Search and Delivery sub-system design,
  • X.500 based server directory and Cost recovery sub-system design.
  • User operation (manuals);
  • Test problems and results;
  • Service procedures;
  • Impact/performance assessment;
  • Service promotional material;
  • Final report.
Documentation is available from the contact below and from


Name of Institution/Organisation Postal Code / City Country
Fretwell-Downing Ltd UK - SHEFFIELD S11 7AE UK
Title, First Name, Name Mr. Georges BINGHAM Address: Brincliffe House
861 Ecclesall Road
Tel: +44-114-268 60 00 Fax: +44-114-268 60 01
E-mail 1: E-mail 2:

Other Partners

Name of Institution/Organisation Country Role
Institute of Oceanographic Science UK P
University College Dublin IRL P
Kyros GR P
Blackwell Ltd. UK A
Thessaloniki University Library GR A
Sheffield University Library UK A

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