SIRS Mandarin, Inc. has announced
the release of version 1.1 of its Mandarin M3 system. Its new features
include enhanced union catalog capabilities, multi-language support, and
expanded database functionality.
Mandarin M3 also has enhancements such as Visual Catalog, a graphical
search method now available on the M3 OPAC and Web OPAC that enables patrons
to perform searches based on visual cues and text.
According to the announcement, Mandarin M3 is an award-winning, PC-based
client/server library automation system suitable for school, public, academic,
and special libraries. M3 is powered by a proprietary search engine specifically
designed by SIRS Mandarin to search full MARC records, and includes 32-bit
client/server architecture delivering optimum workstation speed and an
unlimited LAN workstation license.
Mandarin M3 version 1.1 includes the following features:
Union catalog hosting service—With this new service, libraries can have
their collections hosted and serviced at SIRS Mandarin’s corporate office
in Boca Raton, Florida. M3’s Classic Merged Union Catalog lets libraries
share MARC records and current information about patrons and holdings on
a central server. Optional Z39.50 client/server modules and M3 Web Gateways
for Adults and Children enable districts to set up a Virtual Union Catalog.
Scoping—When connected to a central database, individual libraries sometimes
find it difficult to determine which database records belong to their collections.
Scoping limits record-viewing capability to a library’s own individual
records. In addition, scoping provides participating libraries with increased
M3’s advanced cataloging and circulation modules have been expanded to
include the following features:
Multi-language support—Provided for users and patrons in Spanish- and French-speaking
regions at home and abroad. SIRS bilingual technical support is also available.
Self Check and Return—Allows patrons to check out and return their own
books, magazines, and other resources without the need for librarian assistance.
This feature alleviates time demands on librarians while limiting patron
access to certain system functions.
Search and Replace—Enables users to instantly locate and modify text in
the catalog database’s records
Booking—Lets librarians reserve current holdings for a future date and
According to the announcement, M3 OPACs have been modified with features
that enhance flexibility and graphical appeal to librarians and patrons.
These new features include:
Visual Catalog—Allows patrons to perform searches based on visual cues
or text, as well as launch software applications and link to the Internet
from the interface
Full MARC display—Presents full MARC information on-screen, eliminating
Whole Field Browsing—Lets patrons effectively narrow their searches for
appropriate resources by searching complete fields
Shelf Browse—Provides information about materials shelved on either side
of a call number
Book Bag—Lets users collect individual bibliographic records from a series
of searches and leave the library with a complete bibliography
Additionally, circulation, cataloging, and both OPAC modules include new
Equipment databases, which let libraries catalog and track in-house usage
of audiovisual and technology equipment and new circulation and statistical
reports that monitor recently acquired items, collected fines, overdue
items, and more.