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  • Change Incoming for Keystone-Hosted Customers

    Photo of a sunrise with a bright blue sky and rays of light.

    Attention, Keystone-hosted customers: We are currently rolling out a change to our hosting. This change is on our end and will NOT involve any charge to you, and you will still be hosted on AWS, with all the current services and benefits.

    Our hosting services have previously been set up so that customers are divided by geographical region, and share a server within that region. We are now in the process of changing this so that each library has their own individual server. This enables us to locate the server in closer proximity to the library itself, and ensures that all the processing power of the server is devoted solely to that library's own operations.

    We have already moved several libraries, and everything is functioning normally—in fact, we have been told that those libraries are seeing better performance and improved speeds!

    There should be no update or changes needed to your KLAS installation on individual workstations; we just change where your KLAS shortcut is pointing, so that it accesses the new server. For Gutenberg libraries, or other customers with external integrations, we will coordinate with the NLS or the relevant other party as needed for a smooth transition. If your IT whitelists IP addresses, we will provide the new addresses early in the process so they can add it them the list.

    If you have not already been contacted to schedule the changeover, be on the lookout. We are looking to get all Central and East-coast LBPD libraries transitioned to the new model, then Eastern IRCs, then move Westward. However, if you are further west and want to be fast-tracked, you are welcome to contact Customer Support and indicate your interest.

    We hope this will be a positive change for everyone, and expect it to be a smooth transition!

  • 2019 Year in Review

    2019 Year in Review

    I don’t know about you, but when I stop and look back at how far we’ve come since January, how my goals and focus have shifted to keep up with your needs and all of our new developments...it’s been a long year!

    KLAS Version 7.7

    The new version of KLAS is a major update, with some big changes on the back-end, high-volume Duplication on Demand support, and a rapid “Agile” development cycle.

    The Beta deployment of 7.7 to North Carolina Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped at the beginning of the year allowed us to track down and fix a ton of issues -- all while getting Gutenberg integration in place and developing the new deployment processes. We were finally able to start bringing more libraries on board in May, and are now working on bringing our IRC/IMCs up on the new system as well.

    All but three Keystone-Hosted libraries now have at least a 7.7 Preview database, we’re making steady progress on self-hosted libraries, and we’ve begun work on the Perkins National Deaf-Blind Equipment Distribution Program (PNDB)’s database as well as our first 7.7 IRCs!

    It has been a long road, but we’re now well on our way to a full conversion to 7.7. Development for the new version has been rolling along beautifully all the way up to our current version, 7.7.20.

    New Features

    There have been too many New Features over the past year to name, but here are some highlights:

    • The new installation and upgrade processes reduce or eliminate the need for admin access, IT assistance, and multiple downloads.
    • KLAS can now handle the extended UTF8 character set, including more diacritics.
    • HTTPS encryption replaces VPNs to keep your data secure while allowing a more streamlined installation.
    • eCommerce Integration is now available.
    • The Merge Query Function has been added to the Patron and Catalog modules, allowing you to do more with queries than ever.
    • The ability to Query on Patron Subscription information is now available in Patron.
    • The Apply / Remove Headings to Query Set tool allows you to update Subjects or other Headings on a batch of Titles all at once.
    • The Batch Update Patron Medium tool allows you to apply Profile changes to a batch of Patrons.
    • You can now print eDocs from the Shipping Wizard.

    And that doesn’t include the numerous new features implemented to support Duplication on Demand!

    Duplication on Demand

    As those who’ve used or are still using the original PCC workflow know: it’s a very hands-on process and unfortunately prone to errors.

    The new Duplication workflows, which leverage a dedicated appliance such as a Scribe or Gutenberg, were designed to shift as much of the work as possible from library staff and external programs back to KLAS itself. A complete conversion to Duplication on Demand, rather than just using DoD or PCC as a supplement to traditional circulation, is a huge paradigm shift which necessitated some trial-and-error -- and a whole lot of development.

    We found it necessary strike a balance between updating and re-using old processes (like mail card batches and the nightly programs now used to refill Service Queues), completely new programming, and everything in-between.

    We are very pleased that we now have four libraries actively using Scribe (with a fifth being brought online this month) and two live on Gutenberg!

    The duplication workflows continue to be refined as we receive feedback from our pioneering libraries including the new KLAS screens (such as the Service Queue and Duplication Order tabs), the duplication appliances, and all of the communications in-between that make it all work.

    KLAS Users’ Conference 2019 and More!

    In early June, the Palm Beach County Talking Books Service and the Friends of the Palm Beach County Library hosted the 2019 KLAS Users' Conference in West Palm Beach, FL. It was a great opportunity to work with some of you in person during a hands-on pre-conference, a variety of Keystone- and user-led sessions, and even a duplication Petting Zoo where we demonstrated the workflows of both the Scribe and Gutenberg.

    However, as we head into the off-year between conferences that doesn’t mean there aren’t any opportunities to learn more about KLAS or network with your fellow users. We introduced a variety of other opportunities this year -- from Q&A Webinars to an IRC Symposium. Thanks to all your positive feedback, we’ll be offering even more things like this next year as well!

    KLASusers.com Content

    Finally, we’ve made a significant effort in the last year to be more proactive in communicating what’s happening at Keystone and with KLAS. We hope you’ve found it beneficial even when we’re racking our brains trying to come up with yet another blog post topic or forum tip. So, if there’s something you’d like to have us cover in a webinar, a blog post, or a discussion forum tip please let us know.

    In sum, it has been an amazing (and busy, and sometimes difficult, and ultimately rewarding) year, and I am looking forward to discovering what 2020 will bring.

  • 2024 KLASUsers' Mini-Conference

    2024 KLASUsers' Mini-Conference header graphic

    2024 KLASUsers' Mini-Conference schedule graphicIn May of 2022, we held the first KLASUsers' Mini-Conference to provide space and time for Keystone Staff and KLAS Users' to connect and learn from one another as well as share / discuss Keystone company updates and KLAS new features, tips & tricks, and new development suggestions. 2024's Mini-Conference will offer all of that and MORE! 

    The 2024 KLASUsers' Mini-Conference will be a free, online event accessible via Zoom held:

    • Tuesday, May 14 - 1:00-5:00 PM Eastern Time / 10:00 AM-2:00 PM Pacific
    • Wednesday, May 15 - 1:00-5:00 PM Eastern Time / 10:00 AM-2:00 PM Pacific

    Add the event to your calendar now, then review the initial schedule, and submit your registration form. Seminar date has passed. 



    This year will again feature sessions with topics of interest for all KLAS Users, as well as more specific Instructional Resource Center (IRC) and Library for the Blind and Print Disabled (LBPD) sessions. New for 2024 will be two sessions featuring updates from staff of the American Printing House for the Blind (APH) and from the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled (NLS). 

    Session Types:

    General sessions will share information and updates relevant to  all KLAS Users, and no conflicting sessions will be scheduled at the same time they are offered. During these sessions, there will limited time for questions and answers.

    Workshop sessions are presented by Keystone staff member or a guest speaker. Attendees are encouraged to ask questions throughout the session. These in-depth presentations share information via different tools such as slides, live examples, and / or user experiences.

    Birds-of-a-Feather (BoaF) sessions give participants the opportunity to exchange ideas in a group discussion setting. All KLAS Users are invited to participate in the BoaF sessions they feel are relevant to them. However, we do indicate for each session whether an IRC or LBPD audience might find it more applicable. Topics range from making the most of KLAS features to exploring broader service-related ideas. These sessions are not formal presentations with slides or software demonstrations. Instead, the format is casual and open. Moderators launch the discussion and keep the conversation on topic; participants are asked to come prepared to share and learn.

    Tuesday, May 14

    This is an initial schedule, and sessions are subject to change. Want to get more involved with the Users' group? Volunteering to moderate a BoaF session is a great way to get started!


     Breakout Room

     Session Type

     Session Title


     1:00-2:15 PM ET  Raleigh  Workshop  KLAS Updates for Library for the Blind and Print Disabled Users  Katy Patrick, Keystone Systems
     1:00-2:15 PM ET  Glenwood  Workshop  Updates from APH Staff  Anthony Phillips, APH
     2:30-3:30 PM ET  Raleigh  General  State of Keystone: Company Updates & Highlights  James Burts & Drea Callicutt,
     Keystone Systems
     3:15-5:00 PM ET  Raleigh  Workshop  Updates from NLS Staff  Jason Yasner, David Perrota, &
     Justine Walp, NLS
     3:15-5:00 PM ET  Glenwood  Workshop  KLAS Updates for Instructional Resource / Materials Center Users  Katy Patrick, Keystone Systems


    Wednesday, May 15 


     Breakout Room

     Session Type

     Session Title

     Speaker / Moderator

     1:00-2:15 PM ET  Raleigh  General  KLAS Users' Group Business Meeting  Traci Timmons, KLAS Users'
     Group President
     2:30-3:30 PM ET  Raleigh  Birds-of-a-Feather (IRC)  Census & Yearly Updates  TBD
     2:30-3:30 PM ET  Glenwood  Birds-of-a-Feather (LBPD)  Reader Advisor  TBD
     2:30-3:30 PM ET  Pinecrest  Birds-of-a-Feather (LBPD)  Reports & Queries  TBD
     3:45-5:00 PM ET   Raleigh   Birds-of-a-Feather (IRC)  IRC Reports & Queries  TBD
     3:45-5:00 PM ET  Glenwood  Birds-of-a-Feather (LBPD)  Circulation  TBD
     3:45-5:00 PM ET  Pinecrest  Birds-of-a-Feather (LBPD)  Outreach  TBD



    Registration is not required, but doing so helps us know approximately how many persons to plan on for each session. You will automatically be emailed a copy of your registration upon submission.

  • A look at the KLAS roadmap

    A roadmap with a red push pin placed at the point of two divergent routes.

    KLAS v7.8 is coming!A roadmap with a red push pin placed at the point of two divergent routes.

    After two years of small updates, we’re really close to bidding farewell to KLAS v7.7 and rolling over to v7.8. This will not be a big change at all from your perspective, but I want to give you a heads-up about what’s coming and why.

    The first KLAS v7.8 release will likely include other fixes and improvements, but the update triggering the version change should be completely invisible. That update is to Open Edge (OE), the framework and programming language we use to build the KLAS interface. The new version of OE will provide us access to new options for programming KLAS, keep us up to date and allow us to get any bug fixes on that end of things. However, nothing should change to the look and feel of KLAS. How it runs, what is available for users, and how we support it will all remain the same.

    To make sure the update to the back-end doesn’t introduce any problems on the front-end, we’ll be doing a lot of rigorous testing. We’ll also rely on feedback from our Early Release customers even more than usual so we can be sure we haven’t missed anything. Fortunately, we do not anticipate any changes or problems. This won’t be a major conversion (like the one from 7.6 to 7.7), just a big update. 

    So, in short, v7.8 will be an update for us, but not any different for you. Don’t worry, we’ll keep those bi-weekly small updates coming with all the bug fixes, improvements, and new features we can squeeze into them.

    So... whatever happened to v.8?

    If you attended the 2018 KLAS Users’ Conference in Idaho, you probably remember testing our prototype user interface for the web-based KLAS v.8. It’s something that we and you were really excited about, so it makes sense that we get questions about it on occasion.

    For quite a while, we didn’t have much to say. That’s because, right after the 2018 conference, we realized just how big the need was to get Duplication on Demand up and running at full scale ASAP. We shifted gears pretty hard, switching our attention to: taking Scribe from a proof-of-concept to a fully-realized appliance capable of supporting a library’s full circulation; getting Gutenberg integration in place; and building screens, workflows, and features to support this whole new approach to service.

    Additionally, we needed to keep up with the development needs of our IRC/IMC customers, bring new customers online, and keep everything else running. That “keep everything else running” was complicated by the deployment of 7.7 and all the development needed to support it, and a massive server crash that prompted our migration to all cloud hosting.

    Unfortunately, the pivot to duplication ate up the time and resources we’d hoped to devote to KLAS v.8. But there’s is good news! With Duplication on Demand finally getting to be as robust and fully-featured as we envisioned, and the needs of our IRC / IMCs lining up with some things we needed to do anyways... we’re finally able to provide an update: we are at work on the foundations of v.8!

    To be clear, it’s still a very long road ahead. Building an entirely new UI (informed by the prototypes and user testing from 2018, and everything new we’ve added to KLAS since) is a huge undertaking requiring a lot of development resources. However, the other major task will be the need for the UI to communicate with the database storing all of your information by way of APIs. Finally, the APIs needed to be built and implemented so that they allow existing programs in KLAS to function alongside any user interface we build moving forward—we know from painful experience that we can’t rebuild all of KLAS at once and release an entirely new interface with everything you need ready and working on day 1.

    We’re excited to say this key building block, the suite of APIs that will provide the machine-to-machine communications needed for v.8 to function, is now underway!

    You may have noticed these APIs cropping up in Release Lists this year, and more are coming. For now, IRCs that maintain student data, orders, and catalog info in more than one system are using and will be using these APIs to integrate with third party systems, but the beauty of APIs is that once they are in place, any compatible system can use them.  The programming we’re doing now to integrate with other systems will be the thing that allows us to integrate with the browser-based KLAS v.8 in the future (while still allowing the v.7 interface to be used during the transition).

    How long will this take? It’s really hard to say. It ultimately depends on what other development is needed, what new needs crop up which we haven’t anticipated, and what resources open up for us to take this on. But getting the APIs in place is incredibly important foundational work, and we’re really excited to finally get them on the front burner and in progress.

  • A New & Improved klas.com

    A New & Improved klas.com

    In March of this year, Katy and I undertook a rather large project that we're now happy to see come to fruition. For the past few years, we've been discussing updating the look and feel of Keystone's website with the goal of creating something more modern, with some additional features, but still maintaining our commitment to providing info on an easy-to-use and easy-to-navigate site. To help us with this endeavor, we chose to work with Alison Meeks of AM Graphix. We're excited to say that as of yesterday, the new and improved klas.com is now live!

    The content we previously provided is still available, but we hope we've enhanced it and made it all easier to find. One of the great new features we added for current KLAS Users is the ability to submit a "Support" request from any page on the site using the "Support" button in the right-hand corner. Also, the whole site is mobile-friendly and responsive to the size of your browser window.

    Below are some additional screenshots of the shiny, new klas.com. We invite you to spend some time checking it out!

    The Current Customer OPACs page has been updated to a modern, graphical style, showcasing the logo of each library or organization in addition to the text name. It has also been broken into new sections: Featured, Talking Book Libraries, and Instructional Resource Centers. (Note: Prefer a text-only approach? We've added that version of the list to the KLASusers.com menu!)

     Screen Shot 2020 07 28 at 11.46.53 AM


    The Products and Services: Scribe Duplication System page is new! It includes information about the Scribe, as well as some photos.

     Screen Shot 2020 07 28 at 11.45.45 AM


    We've included some new testimonials from KLAS users on the home page. Thank you to everyone who provided a quote for us--we appreciate your kind words and support!

    Screen Shot 2020 07 28 at 11.43.35 AM


    Finally, this is and will be an ongoing effort. Now that the new look and new organization is in place, we have plans to edit much of the content, so we'd love to hear your feedback!


  • A new way to Meet

    A new way to Meet

    A couple of years ago now, we started offering webinars to help keep the Users’ Group informed and connected, from the open forum KLAS Q&A with Katy webinars to library-specific Duplication training webinars. As we transition to an every-other-year conference format, we’ve ramped up the webinar schedule, including user-led sessions and roundtables in addition to our Keystone-presented sessions.

    COVID has only increased the need and popularity of these sessions—and not just for us, but for everyone who uses webinar platforms.

    For most of the past few years, we’ve been using Join.Me and had mostly positive experiences and feedback for its ease-of-use and reliability. However, with offering so many more webinars to a broader selection of our users, and with Join.Me’s servers a bit bogged down from increased use, there was a definite shift.

    This was particularly apparent in the Keystone Updates and New Features in KLAS sessions that we held in place of our usual Users’ Group meeting during the online NLS conference. The turnout for those sessions was fantastic, but unfortunately caused a few technical issues as our platform and our moderator struggled to keep up with the turnout.

    In light of all that, we started the search for a replacement.

    This month, we are officially making the switch to Google Meet. From our testing in-house and with a few pilot meetings, we’re confident that it will be easier for us as hosts, and will see a lot less of the lag that was plaguing our attendees.

    It also has some features that we think will prove beneficial, including automatic captioning, and the ability to show attendees’ webcams in a tiled display for a better “round-table” feel. You’ll be able to enable or disable the captioning and change views any time to suit your preferences, so give it a try!

    You do not need a Google account to join us using Meet! However, if you are logged into a Google account, it’ll automatically bring you into the meeting with that account name. If you don’t want your personal or otherwise irrelevant Gmail name visible make sure to log out or switch accounts before joining the meeting.

    We hope you’ll try it out and join us at the upcoming Virtual Programming roundtable this Thursday or at one of our other upcoming webinar sessions! Hopefully, this will be an improvement for everyone who had technical difficulties or bandwidth issues with Join.Me. If you do have any feedback about the new platform or difficulties joining a session, please let us know as we keep working to provide excellent online sessions!

  • A Note from James, plus Tips & Tricks part III

    A Note from James, plus Tips & Tricks part III

    First, we'd like to share a note with you from James Burts, Keystone Executive Vice President,

    "Dealing with the new realities of Covid-19 has certainly been a very strange time. At Keystone, we began having staff wanting to work from home and self-isolate on March 12th, and over the following 2 weeks had increasing numbers of staff opting to work from home. As of March 30th, our local county mandated that we all self-isolate and work from home. I certainly hope you’ve not seen a change in our ability to support you all.

    Fortunately, we’d already taken the steps necessary to allow all our staff to work from home effectively— steps we’d taken expecting that it would help us in the event of a snowstorm or hurricane that made roads unsafe. Instead, the road are nearly empty, but it’s simply getting people together that’s unsafe. Who would have thought??

    We continue to be available to help you and your staff in anyway we can. Whether that’s helping create new workflows to quarantine materials, or helping your staff work on record cleanup while they are working from home without access to your collection— we are here for you all. We have provided some ideas for managing these strange times on KlasUsers.com, and are always interested in hearing other ideas you may have. If you have any questions, or any ideas that you would like to implement, please reach out to us. We’ll be happy to help talk through your thoughts, and help address your needs."

    Next up, as part of our ongoing work to support you, a few more tips and tricks, this time for:

    1. Strategies for serving patrons when you have a restricted card run
    2. Blocking service to prisons or other institutions

    Or you can follow these links for our previous suggestions:

    Tip 1:

    Strategies for serving patrons when you have a restricted card run.

    Nightly sorts patrons that need service by:

    1. Serve Code (least frequent to most frequent, with List Only ahead of Autoselect)
    2. Last Served date (none to oldest to most recent)

    This gives priority to patrons who haven’t been served for a while, and gives List Only patrons a better chance of getting their titles before they go out to Autoselect patrons. Under normal circumstances, this setup ensures that everyone will be served in a reasonable timeframe, even if you restrict your card run and don’t get to everyone who needs service each day.

    However, these are not normal circumstances. If you’re currently running on a skeleton crew and severely limited card run, your Nightly Auto patrons might languish at the end of the list.

    While these circumstances are in place, or even when the floodgates re-open and you need to play catch-up, you may want to switch up this order from time to time. If you would like to change up the order of the Nightly sort to give different patrons a shot at getting books, please contact Keystone Customer Support—and then be sure to let us know when we should put it back.

    Tip 2:

    Blocking service to prisons or other institutions:

    If your Department of Corrections requires that service is suspended during this time, we can apply a block to all inmates for you. This will stop all circulation to those patrons for a specified period of time, though it does not impact their NLS direct magazines. Please let us know how to identify incarcerated patrons (such as by Patron Type), and how long you need the block to remain in place.

    If a nursing home or other facility requests that you stop service to their patrons, you can apply a similar block. You would first need to set up a "Quarantine" block (let us know if you need assistance). Then, find the patrons who live in that place and add the block to each record. If you don't already have relationships set up linking the patrons to the facility, you can find them by querying on the address.

    Quick Search –

    • Main Status | Equals | A
    • City | Equals | Raleigh

    Advanced Search –

    • Address | Street Address | Matches | 8016 Glenwood

    This query will limit your results to active records in the target city, with an address matching the facility’s street address. The idea is to be just specific enough, hence why I recommend searching the street address only for the number and street name. If it isn’t a common street, you might even leave off the number, and review results to see if the facility has multiple buildings.

    And that's it for this week's tips! We hope these have been helpful for you; please continue to let us know how we can help!

  • Connecting with KLASusers

    Connecting with KLASusers

    Prior to the 2019 KLAS Users' Conference, Katy and I received a request to present about the different ways we send out communications and what platforms are available to users to share info with one another. On Thursday morning at the conference, we shared our "Connecting with KLASusers" presentation on this topic... and we decided to use the presentation as an opportunity to learn just what folks in the audience knew about our communications platforms and efforts.

    Connecting with KLASusersThe agenda of the presentation started with klasusers.com, including the Key Notes blog, various resources on the site, as well as some tips and tricks on navigating the discussion forums. We then took some time to discuss the KLASusers e-list and share info about Keystone's social media presence.

    Also, during the course of the presentation, we had anyone who wished to participate answer questions in a live poll. It was very interesting to see how many folks were and were not aware of who usually writes our Key Notes blog post and what kind of content they wanted to see more of. (And of course, we couldn't help but have a little fun with it.)

     Connecting with KLASusers

    This week we wanted to share the presentation for those who were not at the conference so they have the opportunity to learn about all the different ways we try to share tips, ask questions, and share the latest news about KLAS. Also, we want you to know what communications channels are available to you as a user and how to make sure you're not missing out on important info. You can access the PowerPoint via the below link.

    • Connecting with KLASUsers.com - PowerPoint


    Another great resource to learn about how to stay up to date with the latest blog posts, forum discussions, etc. is the "Tips for dealing with klasusers.com FOMO" Key Notes blog from March of 2018 which including how to subscribe to specific discussion forum threads or categories, "favorite" forum topics, and the best way to find the latest Key Notes blog post and forum posts.

     Connecting with KLASusers

    Please be sure to let us know if you have questions about these resources and / or how to use them.

  • Downtime Update

    Downtime Update

    What a week!...and it’s only Tuesday.

    As I’m sure all of you know, one of our servers decided that 2020 was just too much for it and bit the dust on Monday morning. Our 7.7 customers dodged the worst of it--we’ve been moving everyone to newer servers as they migrate to the new version--and have seen little disruption. Unfortunately, the rest of you have had significant downtime, and we apologize.

    We attempted to resuscitate the server without success. At that point, our disaster recovery procedures went into effect: backups were recovered and our valiant IT and Dev team spent the rest of the day and night porting them to a new cloud server and getting everything rebuilt. Since then, we’ve been working with everyone to get VPNs pointing to the new server location, correcting settings to restore printing and reports, and doing a whole lot of troubleshooting. (All while Nancy is also running an Administrators Training.)

    Up next: finish getting all the WebOPACs and WebOrder systems back online and functioning normally.

    So, while we know this process hasn’t gone as quickly as hoped, please be assured that we are doing everything we can to get you back in business ASAP. Thank you all for your patience and assistance!

  • Duplication Supplies

    Interested in moving to a Duplication on Demand service model, but not sure how you’ll get enough cartridges and other supplies? There’s help available! NLS is offering supplies to all network libraries that are willing to transition to zero copy allotment--whether they plan to implement Gutenberg or Scribe.

    Many of you have already heard about this and some have already put in their request, but please read on anyway—we’ve worked with NLS to make sure we’re accurately covering all the important details.

    On top of that, we’ve developed a worksheet to help you plan your implementation process, including when you will need additional supplies.

    Just the Facts

    When you are ready, you can order from NLS:

    • Up to half of your total need for cartridges and containers.

    (Total need is calculated based on 5 cartridges per active audio patron, so half works out to 2.5 cartridges and cases per active patron.)

    • Pre-printed cartridge and container labels with your library information

    In return, you will need to work towards full duplication service. NLS expects libraries to zero out their copy allotment within 12 months of implementing duplication on demand.

    Good Stuff to Know

    Be aware that your supplies will arrive in one shipment on pallets. This is intended to be a lifetime supply, so please be prepared for a large shipment proportional to your patron base.

    The cartridges will have the standard “white cartridge” passphrase, and will need to be reset to the peach passphrase using the NLS device, or using the Repurpose mode of the Gutenberg.

    NLS encourages libraries to repurpose cartridges and containers from their existing collections to make up the other half of their need, and they can loan Scribe libraries a stand-alone device that will unlock white cartridges for re-use. The cartridge is then re-locked with the peach passphrase, so it will continue to be protected. (Check out our Thursday Tip on High-Capacity Cartridges for the trick to easily identify the best cartridges to keep for duplication.)


    NLS can only get so many supplies ordered and distributed per month. Currently, they are asking for two month’s lead time.

    Being clear about your timeline and need will help NLS prioritize orders, as will holding off on requesting supplies if they will not be needed soon. NLS will also ask Keystone to confirm that we have an “authorized commitment” to proceed and a clear implementation schedule in place, so please coordinate with us before you make your request for duplication supplies to NLS.

    To help you estimate when supplies will be needed, and in what amounts, we have developed the attached worksheet. Take advantage of our experience with several implementations, and have a look! Of course, we know you may still have questions or need more help making your estimates, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with us for assistance.


    The attached questionnaire is intended to help guide you through planning your implementation of a Duplication service model using Scribe or Gutenberg, including generating estimates of supplies needed for the initial stages, specific goals, and action items.

    It will be most useful before contacting NLS to order supplies.

  • Farewell Address

    A photo of Brian and Aimée smiling together.

    “Life is a journey, not a destination.”
    Ralph Waldo Emerson

    Late last year, I reached the age where I became eligible for full Social Security retirement benefits. I decided at that point that I wanted to be able to spend time doing fun things with the family and travel during a time when my health was not a problem. My wife, Aimée, retired a couple of years ago, and she has been patiently waiting for me to join her. We have seen a goodly number of people who have worked longer years, and then had mobility or other health issues facing them by the time they retired. As such, during these last few weeks, I have been drawing to a close my time at Keystone.

    When my career at Keystone started in August of 2004, I was unfamiliar with the programming language used here. I’ve always enjoyed learning new things, finding it fun to figure out how programming languages work. This set the stage for an enjoyable, new challenge.

    The NLS Books on Tape program was not, however, unfamiliar territory. My father, Joe White, had retinitis pigmentosa, and his vision had regressed, several years prior to his passing in 2002, to the point where he was eligible for the program. He was a customer of the Louisiana State Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, and I had seen the tapes, floppy discs, green boxes, and the player when our family visited him and my mother at the house where I grew up. He often talked about how much he enjoyed listening to the books and magazines. He and my mother would comb through the TBT listings when they were sent, to pick out those titles he would be interested in hearing.

    I’m a back-room kind of guy. I talk in geek-speak, and usually need real-people interpreters in order to effectively interact with customers. For that reason, you may not know me, even though I’ve been here a while. You may be more familiar with some of my favorite projects, in which I have played a major role, that are still around – Nightly (both the original, now termed “physical”, version and the more recent service queue fill version), Excel export, some accessibility improvements with browses and Supertabs, the Service Queue tab in the Patron module, and the PIMMS interface.

    I won’t delve into the geekiness of all of the fun I had working on all of those (as well as others), but I would like to let you know that working on the nightly programs was a very personally rewarding experience. Though my Dad was no longer around, I still felt a personal connection to serving content to the patrons in the best way I could, because I approached the project as if my Dad were here to receive the results. (Louisiana is a KLAS customer; so, if he were still a patron, that would have been the case. How rewarding that would have been!)

    There is one other project left for the end of this list. Along the way in my journey here, I have worked and reworked, and reworked again the series processing in KLAS. Aspects of series processing have gotten very complex over the years. In the latest KLAS release (7.7.65, currently in testing) is my last big project – taking into account when serving a patron a series involves a single title that appears in multiple series, or a single KLAS title that houses a compilation of multiple entries in a single series. It has been a fun challenge to end my time here. My sincere hope is that these updates serve you and the patrons well.

    I have enjoyed working with the management and staff at Keystone. They have helped me grow over my time here, both technically and professionally. I have welcomed the times I have gotten to meet with you, the customers. It is both important and interesting to understand your work and how we software developers can best serve you. I appreciate your feedback, positive or negative, as it has always helped improve our process.

    Thank you for all you do to serve this sector of the public. Your work is truly a valuable public service. I am genuinely honored to have played even a small part in it.

    Peace and Good Fortune to you all!
    Brian White


  • Farewell Message from John O.

    Photo of John and Laura smiling in front of a Christmas tree.

    I want to take some time to say Merry Christmas and Happy New Years to you all, my customers and friends. In my twenty years at Keystone I've tried to develop and foster relationships with all that have reached out to me for help. Keystone allowed and encouraged this and I'm thankful to them for trusting me with your care.

    It's now time for me to start the next phase of my life. My wife Laura retired almost three years ago and it's time for me to join her. Friday December 30, 2022 will be my last day at Keystone. We plan to travel and enjoy spur of the moment adventures with family and friends. Plus a few “Honey Do's” that she's been listing over the years.

    Thank you all and God Bless each and every one.
    John Owen

  • FYI for NLS Libraries - FY2020 Statistics

    FYI for NLS Libraries - FY2020 Statistics

    NLS has requested that we (and the other NLS providers) extract and submit some data for them to review. For each of our NLS Libraries, we will be providing NLS with the following statistical information on October 1.

    We will be generating these data files for NLS and submitting the information to NLS directly, so you don't need to do anything. We will also send a copy to each library, so you know what was sent to NLS and can review the data for your own information.

    Readership: a list of all patrons that received materials from the library during Fiscal Year 2020. The list will include the Patron PIMMS ID, whether they are marked Individual or Institution, and whether they received at least one of the following during FY 2020:

    • Digital Audio book
    • Hard Copy Braille book
    • E-Braille brook
    • or Network Library collection item

    Note that audio and hard copy braille readership activity includes both books circulated by the library and magazine subscriptions sent by NLS. Network library collections include large print books, descriptive videos, and local magazines. BARD download activity is not included, as NLS already has that information.

    Circulation: a count of all circulations this year broken out by library and by medium: Talking Books on Cartridge; Hard Copy Braille; and E-Braille on Cartridge. Circulation counts include counts for book/monograph circulation only. Local magazines/serials sent on cartridge are not part of these counts.

    Note that Audio circulations are a count of the number of titles sent on cartridge instead of the number of cartridges sent. Hard copy braille circulations count the number of volumes sent, e-braille is the number of titles sent.

    A note about the Readership & Circulation Report: Be aware that the number of people in the Readership list we provide to NLS probably will not match the total from your Readership & Circulation report. The R&C report total includes all accounts that you have updated that year, even if they did not receive something. With that in mind, if you have questions about how these lists do and do not line up with your R&C report, please let us know.

  • Guiding Us Forward

    Guiding Us Forward

    Our developers have been very busy lately, implementing Gutenberg, ironing out eCommerce, and gearing up to start converting IRC / IMC customers to version 7.7, among other things.

    But amidst all of that, we’re still listening for your feedback—and even relying on it more than ever!

    So here are a few notes on how you are helping guide us forward.

    1. KDAC (KLAS Development Advisory Committee

    KDAC has some new members! A big welcome to Sam Lundberg of New Mexico Talking Book Library and Shawn Lemieux of New York State Talking Book & Braille Library, and thank you so much for lending us some of your time!

    So, what goes on in a KDAC meeting? We spend a lot of the timesharing what we’ve been working on that month (making your KDAC representatives a great source of “insider information” about what we’ve been up to), as well as our plans and expectations about what’s coming up next. Through all of that, we’re listening to their feedback and taking notes about what they think of new features, what questions they think need to be addressed, and their suggestions on prioritization.

    We also frequently have questions for them: should we pursue Option A or Option B to fix a specific issue? How can we make this or that easier? If we did things this way, would that cause any problems for you?

    KDAC has been a big help in steering and refining our development, so I’m especially excited to find out what the new voices will bring to the table this year.

    (Want to learn more about KDAC, view a list of all current members, or review the new guidelines? It’s all in the KDAC Article.)

    2. Webinars & Other Non-Conference Stuff

    I’ve been happy to do several Q&A webinars with the Users’ Group, and we’ve had a lot of positive feedback (thank you all so much!)... but I don’t want mine to be the only voice you hear.

    Are there topics you want to hear about, or something you’d like to share? Whether it’s a new initiative at your library, your experiences implementing Duplication on Demand, or a discussion focused on a specific area of KLAS (like Serials or Accounts), we want to hear your topic ideas!

    If you’d rather collaborate with another user or a Keystone expert, don’t hesitate to suggest it anyway; we’d be happy to help out or help you find someone who can.

    A very easy way to weigh in on all this is to fill out the 2019 KLAS Users' Conference Follow-up Survey! Yes, even if you didn’t attend the 2019 conference!

    If you’ve completed the survey and think of something new, or something that didn’t fit in the form, you are also very welcome to email us at Keystone or any of your Users’ Group officers, or you can post about it on the Discussion Forums.

    However you go about it, thank you for helping guide us and making KLAS and your Users’ Group better and better!

  • How's my Driving: Results!

    Now that we've been doing this for a year, it's been great to take a step back, look at how it's going, and figure out places where we need to make adjustments. You may have already noticed some format changes in the weekly wrap-ups, trying to make it quicker and easier to scan through these and quickly spot any topics you may want to read up on. I will also be re-doubling my efforts to bring you great technical content (how-to's and development updates), but first: a look at the survey results.

    First, I want to take a look at the question I felt had the most interesting responses! After the read more link, I'll go through the rest in order. (Note: questions are listed in heading 3 for easy browsing)

    Would you like to see comments or tips from your fellow users? How comfortable do you feel commenting on the forums?
    The second part of this question saw the full range or responses, from people who are confident and comfortable with replying, to those who are not at all. However: everyone who answered the first part of the question wanted to see tips or comments from other users!

    I would encourage all of you to keep that in mind... even if you feel like you're newer to KLAS or if you suspect your comment might be too basic or even wrong... your fellow users want to hear from you! I promise, if I spot something that could use some correction or clarification, I will provide the extra info with respect.

    Also, don't feel like you need to wait for me to post a topic that applies to you--you can post comments, tips, or questions any time, anywhere on the forums. They're here for you!

    Do you read Key Notes blog posts?

    • 45.8% OftenHow's my Driving: Results!
    • 33.3% Once / Occasionally
    • 12.5% Always
    • 8.3% Nope

    I think this is great! I'm so happy that so many of you are reading these posts often--and that others are dropping in occassionally for the topics that interest them.

    And to the devoted "always" readers: you're awesome. Thank you so much for trusting us with your time and following along with us. That's exactly how I hope for this to work.

    What are your favorite types of blog post?

    • 91.3% Technical content
    • 43.5% Users' Group content
    • 34.8% Behind-the-Scenes at Keystone

    We hear you! We will continue all types of content, but I will do my best to bring you the technical content you really, really want. And if there's a particular topic you want a "how-to" of or a feature you want a closer look at... let us know!

    Do you like having a new post each week or would you prefer less to keep up with?

    • 72.7% Weekly is good
    • 27.3% Weekly is too often

    I didn't know what to expect from these results, so I'm glad to hear our current format is working for most of you! For the rest: you have our blessing to skim the weekly wrap-ups and skip any weeks when you're too busy.

    What do you think of our Notes from the Scribe guest posts?

    • 57.1% Good, and I'd like to see more guest posts!How's my Driving: Results!
    • 23.8% Good, but I'm not interested in other guest posts.
    • 19% Not interested

    We're so glad most of you are enjoying these! We'll also look for other opportunities to put up a guest post now and then... but if they don't interest you, don't worry. Guest posts will remain an occassional thing, and they'll be clearly marked in the wrap-ups so you can skip them.

    Anything else you want us to know about the Key Notes Blog?
    (Any topic requests? pet peeves? guest post volunteers?)

    All of your comments are noted. In particular, I'd like to respond to one:

    "It would be nice to be able to comment directly to a blog post instead of going into the forums."

    I agree! Unfortunately, that is not something our current platform can do... but we will keep that feature in mind as we continue working to make this site more useful for you.

    Do you read the Thursday Forum Tips?

    • 70.8% Once / OccasionallyHow's my Driving: Results!
    • 12.5% Often
    • 8.3% Always
    • 8.3% Nope

    Very interesting! Since the tips are always short and sweet, I'd expected them to have a bigger following than the blog, but that doesn't quite seem to be the case!

    I will watch for opportunities to make the Thursday forum posts even better, but in the meantime, I hope you'll continue to drop in occasionally for the tips that interest you... and maybe let a co-worker know if you see one that applies to their job duties. I'd appreciate your help in getting this content to the people who will find it useful!

    Do you like weekly tips or would you prefer less to keep up with?

    • 73.9% Weekly is good
    • 26.1% Weekly is too often

    Fairly close to the results for the blog... seems like weekly is still good for now, but between the 26 percent who find this too often and fact that most people only read them occasionally, we may decide to post fewer tips in the future. If we do, I'll try to make them twice as good to make up for it ;)

    Have any of the tips encouraged you to try a new feature, change a setting, or do something differently in KLAS?

    • 52.2% Yes, one or twoHow's my Driving: Results!
    • 30.4% No
    • 17.4% Yes, several

    I thought this, along with the next question, might be a good metric for how useful the posts are. I'll be bearing the results in mind and thank you for the feedback.

    If you come across a tip in the future that leads you to try something new or change something up, please reply on the forum or drop me an email to let me know. I'd love, love, love to know which tips strike a chord!

    Have any of the tips prompted you to contact Customer Support for help or more information?

    • 56.5% No
    • 34.8% Yes, one or two
    • 8.7% Yes, several

    I'm sure Customer Support will be glad to hear I'm not inundating them as much as I could be! They're here any time you need them, but I will continue to strive to make things clear enough on their own that no additional help will be needed.

    Anything else you want us to know about forum tips? Any topic suggestions or questions?

    All comments are noted! To answer a couple questions:

    "I also worry that they get buried on the forums. Maybe cross-post to a separate place on the main menu next to the Key Notes Blog on the left?"

    Remember that you can always browse the forum by topic to check for any overlooked threads in areas that interest you--plus, you can subscribe to topics of interest, and hold onto the notification emails until you have time to follow up!

    I think a list of everything might get too long to be useful, but I will create a "best of" page to keep track of and direct people to Thursday Tips that I think will remain relevant for longer. Thanks for the suggestion, and watch for this coming up soon!

    "Are they moderated for content?"

    Individual posts are not moderated--they go up right away. That said, we do moderate user accounts (only people who are confirmed KLAS users have their accounts confirmed) and only logged-in users can post.

    Also, I am notified of everything posted to the forums and read it right away. I may occasionally move a post that I think belongs under a different topic, so that other users can find it easier, but I will never delete someone's comment (unless it is completely, objectively inappropriate, but I trust you all not to do that to me).

    What prompts you to read content on KLASusers.com?

    • 71.4% I read the Weekly Wrap-up email
    • 57.1% I check the site on occasion
    • 9.5% I read posts when a coworker or supervisor recommends them
    • 4.8% I subscribed to the forums I'm interested in
    • 4.8% I check the site regularly
    • 0% I use an RSS feed

    Looks like the wrap-up emails are working as intended! As I've said, we'll try to keep them easy to browse through so you can quickly spot topics that might interest you.

    I'm surprised that so few have subscribed to a forum... this is a fantasic and very easy feature that I'd encourage you to consider! If there are one or two topics on the forums that apply to you (maybe NLS and KLAS Core for administrators, Patron Services for RAs?) give it a try. You will receive a clearly marked email with anything that is posted to that forum. And if you decide later that you'd rather not get those emails, you can always un-subscribe.


    Anyways, thank you again for your time! I do think this will help us make this site and our other communications better and better. Also, I hope you will all feel free to contact me any time you have requests or specific feedback.

    Here's to another great year and to making KLASusers.com the great resource you all deserve!

  • How's My Driving?

    How's My Driving?

    Happy New Year!

    I don't know about you, but I can't believe it's already 2019! For me, that doesn't just mean another resolution to fold my laundry right away, or the end of the holiday baking season (though I will miss all those Christmas cookies). It means we're closing in on the first anniversary of the Key Notes Blog and Thursday Forum Tips!

    That's right, we've been doing this every week since last February! To help us review how it's going and adjust course as needed, we put together a quick survey for you. It's only 12 questions long and will be open through the end of the month.

    Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated! I'm doing this for all of you, so please chime in to let us know how it's going!

    (This survey is closed.)

  • Important Coronavirus Info

    Important Coronavirus Info

    As efforts to slow the spread of the Coronavirus / COVID-19 ramp up, we wanted to share some info with you all:

    1) Keystone Support will still be available

    We are prepared to work from home if needed, and currently have no plans to close or restrict hours.

    2) Working from home with KLAS

    Working from home can't help you keep up with circulation during closures, but letting Reader Advisors (and other staff who do their jobs only or primarily in KLAS) work from home is easy with v7.7.

    Because KLAS v7.7 secures your connection with seamless HTTPS instead of a VPN, Keystone-Hosted users can connect from anywhere. So long as your staff have access to home internet, they can take KLAS home with them. It will just work--no VPN or additional set-up required.

    If you are still on Keystone-hosted version 7.6, you can connect from home using the instructions we gave after recovering from the SAN failure. No special VPN required, just the correct version of the OpenVPN software. If you need us to re-send instructions, let us know.

    For Self-Hosted users, additional set-up may be needed to connect to your servers off-site. For 7.7, we should be able to create an activation key that will allow remote access. For 7.6, start with your own IT, and let them know that we're here to assist if needed.

    Finally, if you have reduced staff handling your mail, we have strategies in this Forum Post: Short Staffed? Strategies to keep up.

    3) Quarantined Inventory

    If you need to quarantine returned books or other inventory from some or all of your patrons, contact Customer Support.
    We can help you set up an addition circulation status (NAC:QTN), allowing you to track what inventory is currently set aside to allow any contamination to die off. If you find other measures are called for, we can discuss your needs and help you determine the best strategy.

    In short, please know that we are here to support you and any efforts you are taking to stay healthy and protect your patrons.

  • Important Notice regarding Windows 11

    The word caution in red text.

    Hello KLAS users,

    Please note that KLAS does not yet officially support Windows 11. While we have had users running successfully on version 21H2, we now have reports from users running Windows 11 version 22H2 that it is not compatible with KLAS. This version is newly released and in the initial stages of roll out.

    We are working to identify and resolve the issue, but it may take some time.

    If at all possible, please do not upgrade to Windows 11 version 22H2.

    We will let you know once we have solved the compatibility issues and Windows 11 is fully supported with KLAS.

  • Information Round-up

    Information Round-up

    We’ve got some new information up for you this week! Let’s have a look...

    1. Release Lists

    As the v7.7 rollout continues, 7.7 itself has been under continuous improvement. I’ve just posted the most recent build, 7.7.14 (along with 12 and 13, which were very small builds targeted to fixing a few localized but important issues) to the 7.7 Release Lists page.

    The new build has some great quality-of-life improvements, including some new options for your patron queries! For example, you can now query against patron subscriptions (including SER-DDB9 to find patrons with a BARD registration) and whether a patron is set up for Duplication service. A QuickRef with a list of all the new fields you can query against is also available on the Release Lists page. There are improvements for our IRC and other customers as well, so no worries--it's not all LBPH stuff.

    2. Duplication Info

    I’ve been sharing a lot of information about Duplication on this blog, to keep you all informed and up-to-date. But we know it can be a pain to have to go back and find something weeks or months later; especially if you aren’t sure if it was here, on the discussion forums, or somewhere else.

    To address this, we’ve created a one-stop-shop for Duplication Info. You can access this page from the Main Menu, under Documents – Quick Reference (and it’s a static URL, so feel free to bookmark it if that works better for you).

    From now on, all information having to do with Duplication that is posted to KLASusers will be added to the Info page to keep it easily accessible. I have a lot more planned for you (and would love to hear what you need most!) so I hope this Info page will be helpful for keeping it all organized.

    3. Scribe Specs info sheet

    A new document is available on the Duplication Info page--one that I think plenty of you will be interested in!

    The Scribe Specs & Cost document briefly lays out all the specifics of the Scribe system. It covers what is included with a Scribe, the details for each component of the system, and how much it costs all in a streamlined front-and-back info sheet, perfect for your IT folks or funding agencies. Head over to the Info page to give it a download!

  • Introducing the Scribe 2.0

    The scribe 2.0--a compact ReDesign of the scribe system.

    Keystone Systems is pleased to announce an updated version of the Scribe, our duplication on demand appliance.

    The Scribe 2.0 merges the current Scribe components into a single unit thus providing the computing and storage of the Scribe Mini along with the duplication slots of the Scribe Tower in one device. It is a smaller package, with the cartridge slots being more tightly packed than the current Scribe Tower and new shelving units on each side providing organization for the mail cards.

    The new design makes use of a manufactured computer case, meaning we longer need to manufacture Scribe Tower cases locally which was one of the recent bottlenecks in filling Scribe orders.

    The Scribe 2.0 maintains the light strips to provide the status of each duplication slot by indicating whether it is duplicating a cartridge, completed, or has encountered an error. However, the hardware controlling the light strip has been updated to a new component we can control, with the expectation that the lights remain more reliable.

    The scribe 2.0 with a handful of cartridges inserted. Each cartridge has either a mail card or mailing case in the shelf beside it. A stack of ready-to-use cartridges on one side and cases on the other help show that the whole unit is small and compact.
    (click on the image for a closer look)

    All Scribe Systems (whether a standalone Mini, a Mini plus Tower, or the new Scribe 2.0) have access to the same functions, including the web monitor, regular and walk-in duplication modes, and the upcoming ability to unlock and repurpose white NLS cartridges.

    Due to increases in the prices of components, the cost of a Scribe 2.0 is $1,750. Existing orders for Scribes will be fulfilled with Scribe 2.0 systems, and the pricing at the time of order will be honored.

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