Universal Registration System
- To support the expansion of the Digital Knowledge Ventures subscriber base to include institutions such as libraries, high schools, and colleges. The legacy system supports only individual users, not groups.
- To provide a more flexible system for CIAO, Earthscape, and other knowledge centers produced by DKV or EPIC. The legacy systems are unwieldy, hard to maintain, and different for each site.
- To create a centralized system for all CU knowledge centers (Columbia Interactive (CI), CIAO, Earthscape, Gutenberg-e, Columbia American History Online (CAHO), and Columbia Educational Resources Online (CERO)) to allow for flexibility in marketing efforts. These efforts may include cross-promotion, package deals, and other linkage among the various offerings. In the past, all sites have been on different systems and linkage was not possible.
Accommodate Users and Groups
- Columbia students, faculty, and staff currently have free access to the various knowledge centers. This must remain the same.
- Individuals currently have access on a case-by-case basis. The new system must allow for this.
- Institutions currently have access to CIAO, Earthscape, and Gutenberg-e through their legacy registration systems. The new system will integrate all existing information and provide greater ease in updating and maintaining institutional information (such as IP address ranges, contact info, etc.). The new system will also allow for institutions to gain access to all or part of any new knowledge centers.
- Consortia can currently gain access to CIAO and Earthscape on behalf of their constitutents. The new system will accommodate consortia and offer an easier way to view and maintain them.
- Individuals from a subscribing institution currently have access to CIAO and Earthscape through a username and password. This will remain the same in the new system, but the assignment of usernames and passwords can be delegated. Access by these individuals will also be able to be tracked (which is not currently the case), because they will be connected to their institutions. Finally, these individuals may obtain access to any new knowledge centers.
- Promotional or trial accounts are currently given out on a manual basis and are time-consuming to create and maintain. The new system will allow for easier creation and maintenance of these accounts. It will also allow individuals from the marketing group from DKV or EPIC to create and maintain these accounts.
Encompass All Resources
- Whether it be a website, an e-seminar, or some other learning tool, each distinct unit for which we want to provide access is considered a resource. It doesn't matter what the resource actually is; all will be treated the same way.
- In this way, we can mix and match resources into groups (e.g., bundling Earthscape and environment-related e-seminars into a package).
- With the new system, it will be easy to give existing subscribers access to additional resources.
- As new resources are created, they will be integrated seamlessly into this new system.
- It will be possible to group resources together at any time to promote them as a package.
Provide Flexible Authentication
- Currently, some sites provide access through IP address recognition as well as username/password, while others offer access only through username/password. This functionality will expand so that either access method can be used on any site.
- In addition, users can gain access through a promotional code. Individuals in the marketing departments of DKV and EPIC can create and maintain these promotional codes. It will be possible to track registration and usage based on these codes, to determine the success of marketing efforts that use them.
Build Administration Tools
The current EPIC administration systems are difficult to use. The new system will provide functionality such as the ability to enter an IP address range efficiently or to modify existing subscriber information.
Currently, DKV does not have administrative tools, and therefore the ability to view or add information is limited to a few individuals. The new system will have web-based tools that allow more people to add or maintain users.
With the new system, we will have the ability to assign levels of access and authority to a designated person at a subscribing institution. In this way, we can delegate responsibility for user management.
- CAHO, CIAO, Earthscape, CERO, Gutenberg-e, and CI are all plugged into the new system with great success.
- We are also using the system for the SARS conference website, and will be using it for the Miller Theater lectures and upcoming CME course.
- We are currently building versions of the administrative tools for use by DKV's distribution partners.
- We are honing the administrative tools and doing other upgrades to the system, but the main functionality is complete.