Kohacon day 1 – Choir and History Presentation

The next session started with a fantastic choir, which I think was quite mean, because Paul and I had to follow that with our presentation on the History

2014-10-06 10.59.13Because I was presenting, Katrin blogged the History presentation, her notes are below


Paul and Chris gave their presentation on the history of Koha, starting
with their usual stunt - introducing themselves in French and Maori, 
confusing the audience and earning lots of laughter.

I will try to give a short summary on the slides:
- Koha was started in 1999-09, Chris worked at Katipo at the time
- The first version didn't have serials and acqusitions, but went 
live on time for the library to avoid the Y2K problem
- Katipo was a web developing company and not a software vendor, so
they didn't want to sell software, but made it free software so everyone
could use and improve it
- In 2000 there was a website, you could download Koha and also the first
contribution was made from outside Katipo
- In 2001 the first non-English developer contributed to Koha and then
Paul arrived soon after
- 2002 was the second major release and wiki and bugzilla were set up.
- There were a lot of problems with translations, like a lot of hardcoded
English in the code.
- The same year the work on adding MARC support to Koha was started for
a library in the US.
- Nearly 20 developers, libraries using it - time to think some about
a structure for the project. Some roles were introduced that still exist
as of today - Release Manager, Maintainer, QA manager (for a short time),
documentation manager
- 2003-2005 - multi-MARC support was introduced, UNIMARC and MARC21 at the same
- Version 2 also included a serials module, statistics, an improved OPAC and
tools to import data into Koha (bulkmarcimport)
- 2006-2007 had the first KohaCon in Marseille, France and it was decided to move to 
Zebra to speed up the until then MYSQL-based search
- More mailing lists were introduced and the French website for Koha came to life
- 2009-2009 - Koha faced some trouble...
- 2010 - back to hacking. The community moves from koha.org to koha-community.org
proves that open source is stronger than closed source.
- Koha conferences turn into an annual event - starting with Plano, Texas in 2010,
followed by Wellington (NZ), Thane (India), Edinburgh (UK) and ... Córdoba (Argentina).
- Some more positive changes came outof the discussion and move, improving workflows
and communication.
- 2011 - 3.4 is the first time based release.
- Same year Koha switches to a better Templating system and item data are removed
from the MARC record resulting in speed gains.
- 2012 - offline circulation as a Firefox plugin, hourly loans, new design for the staff
interface (3.8)
- Remember: you don't have to upgrade to every release, you can upgrade anytime from
any version to another in one go.
- 3.12 and 3.14 were releases in 2013, changes included the introduction of a new Bootstrap
based responsively designed OPAC, course reserves module, patron self registration and
and HTML5 based offline circulation.
- Chris was forced to spend a lot of time with lawyers, as Liblime tried to register the
trademark Koha in NZ - but the trademark application was rejected and costs were awarded
to The Horowhenua Library Trust (HLT) and Catalyst IT. The trademark is now owned by HLT.
... running outof batter...
- 2014, 3.16. and 3.18 - we are good on features, time to speed things up a bit.
- 2015 - Koha's internals and plumbing needs to be modernized, as new technologies have
become available since Koha was started. 

One question from the audience: What can be done to improve koha-community.org's ranking
in Google? Help by publishing something about Koha and linking back!

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