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Release: July 6, 2000

InfoHawk to replace OASIS catalog system

IOWA CITY- The University of Iowa Libraries has selected InfoHawk as the name for its new online catalog system, set to replace the text-based OASIS system in August. InfoHawk will allow users access to multimedia, remote Web sites, and has the ability to display full text search results.

A UI contest to name the new Windows-based system produced three winners, each of whom will receive a $100 award. The winning submissions were made by Ronald Lauer, professor of pediatrics and epidemiology; Diana Hu, a senior film production major; and Anthony Carroll, sophomore journalism and communication studies major. Lauer has donated his prize to the UI Libraries project funds. Hu says she will use her winnings to help finance her thesis film.

The InfoHawk name has a connection to the UI mascot, which makes it easy to remember, says Marguerite Perret, coordinator of Friends and Public Relations, UI Libraries. Symbolically, the name reflects a hawk's ability to actively search a broad area and focus in on their target, says Donna Hirst, head, OASIS Office.

"The new system will provide service similar to OASIS, but will be more user-friendly with an online catalog which features a Web interface. Within the first few months of production, it will provide the capacity to search millions of catalog titles by providing access to the databases of other cooperating libraries and many specialized databases," Hirst says.

Members of the UI community can access a test version of the new system at online. The test version contains only 50,000 records while InfoHawk, when made permanent, will contain over three million.

In addition to the first-prize awards, two additional prizes were selected by a drawing. John Fry, a history doctoral student, and Yiqiang Wang, post doctoral researcher, department of internal medicine, will each receive a $50 prize.

Over the past year, UI Libraries staff has worked with Information Technology Services staff to adapt the system's basic software to design a new catalog. InfoHawk, available only at the UI, has been developed to meet the specific needs of the UI community.

The campus-wide contest launched in April brought more than 260 entries from UI students, faculty and staff, who represented various UI departments, Perret says. The entries were judged in four phases by persons from the UI Main and Law Libraries, the department of information technology services, and the provost's office.