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					     CityU Library EasyService New Initiatives:
            EasyPay and EasyRegister –
  Creative applications of III’s Fines Payment API

                          Presented by
           Edward So, Michael Cheng, L.F. Lau, Winnie Ho

                        Run Run Shaw Library
                     City University of Hong Kong


HKIUG 8 Dec., 2009
     EasyService in CityU Library
EasyService development in CityU Library:
• 2005: 2 sets of SelfCheck units
• 2008: EasyCheck System™ for Semi-Closed
  collection (UHF RFID)
• 2008: EasyService for CD/DVD Collection (HF RFID)
• 2009: EasyPay and EasyRegister
     EasyService in CityU Library
• 2005: 2 sets of SelfCheck units installed (1st
  UGC funded Library to use), now with 4 sets
     EasyService in CityU Library
• 2008 : EasyCheck System™ for Semi-Closed
  collection, self-developed system using UHF
  RFID technology
     EasyService in CityU Library
• 2008: EasyService for CD/DVD Collection using
  HF RFID technology
    EasyService in CityU Library
• EasyPay
• EasyRegister
            EasyPay - Outline
• Introduction - What is EasyPay?
• Why EasyPay?
• EasyPay Design
• EasyPay Implementation
• Usage Statistics



                                    7
         EasyPay - Background
• One of the initiatives of EasyService in CityU
  raised by Librarian Prof. Steve Ching.


• CityU Library is introducing different
  EasyService applications in phases to
  empower the patrons to check in and check
  out library materials by themselves.


                                                   8
            EasyPay - Introduction
• 2007 Librarian Initiatives
• 2008 Mar – Applied Research Grant to
  develop application
• 2009 Jan - SSCI Journal article published
 Steve H. Ching, Alice Tai, Joanna Pong, & Michael Cheng, “Don’t Let
  Micropayments Penalize You – Experience from the City University of
  Hong Kong,” The Journal of Academic Librarianship, 35 (1):86-97




                                                                        9
     EasyPay - Background (Old Practice)
      OLD: The work flow for collecting fines with Octopus-enabled cash registers

                                     Cash Register




(1) Library Staff input   (2) Library Staff enter    (3) User put Octopus   (4) Staff manually
    the Student ID to         value in Octopus           card to settle         update patron
    Library System,           enabled Cash               payment.               record to
    retrieve the              Register.                                         complete the
    outstanding fines                                                           whole payment
    in Library.                                                                 transaction.

                               No Direct Communication                      Octopus
            Library
           Innopac
            System                             
                                       Connected by staff
                                                                             Card
                                                                            Reader
                                         intermediary                                        10
              Why EasyPay?
• Cash handling require huge manual effort
  especially in Library with Fines.
• Minimize the human error in cash handling
  and input error in the system interface.
• Faster transaction compared with old practice.
• Provide round the clock payment even the
  counter is closed.


                                               11
    EasyPay - Design (Objectives)
• Integration between Octopus and INNOPAC
• No staff intermediary
• Allow payment via electronic means (Octopus)
• Fast, quick and easy to use for patrons
• Integrate with CityU Smart Card.



                                             12
EasyPay – Design (Modes of operation)
• Modes of operation.
• Staff mode – to allow staff to collect money
  using Octopus in the counter.
• Integrated mode - to handle check-in and
  check-out operation as well as the fine
  payment operation.
• Standalone mode – to allow user to pay on a
  kiosk.

                                                 13
EasyPay - Design (Architecture)




                                  14
 EasyPay - Design (Program Flow)
• Need to follow the Octopus Specification and
  requirement (hundred pages of specification
  and test plans).
• Error Handling.
• Strictly complied with the workflow of
  Octopus especially related to the payment
  flow.


                                                 15
EasyPay - Design (Screen Flow)




                                 16
EasyPay - Design (Staff Interface)




                     Transaction Enquiry

                                           17
EasyPay - Design (User/Staff Interface)




                   Fine selection - Confirmation

                                                   18
EasyPay - Design (User/Staff Interface)




                      Fine payment - Selection
                                                 19
     EasyPay - Implementation
           (H/W & S/W)
• Octopus Mini-MOP reader.
• Octopus Development Kit.
• Software: Visual Studio C#.
• All-in-one PC Kiosk (already in EasyCheck
  machine)
• Backend Server Dell PowerEdge 1950 and MS SQL
  Server.
• PC with integrated modem for remote dial-up.
• III Fines Payment API
                                              20
      EasyPay - Implementation
          (Interface with III)
• Fines payment API - facilitates the EasyPay
  workstation to communicate with INNOPAC
  directly.
• A Web Service approach
• To retrieve and update the patron fine
  payment details of the patron record in
  INNOPAC.
• Using searchPatrons to get the fines list and
  updatePatron to collect the fines.

                                                  21
      EasyPay - Implementation
              (Testing)
• Handle different error messages by Octopus
  Mini-MOP reader and INNOPAC.
• Need to pass through the rigorous testing plan
  with Octopus Card Ltd.
• Obtain a type approval form issued by the
  Octopus Card Limited (OCL).



                                               22
             EasyPay - Usage statistics
Oct                     55.70%                               44.30%


Sept                    55.72%                               44.28%


Aug                      61.30%                               38.70%
                                                                                       Cash

 Jul                     59.44%                               40.56%                   Octopus


Jun                         70.53%                               29.47%


May                               79.40%                               20.60%

       0%   10%   20%     30%      40%     50%   60%   70%     80%      90%     100%




                                                                                              23
     EasyPay - System Limitation
• Amount of Octopus payment. Daily Upper limit
  on payment. Daily limit on Octopus auto-added
  value.
• Only auto-added value but not manual added
  value to the Octopus.
• Required modem (telephone) dialup to upload
  the Octopus data information.
• Bill are not covered because of adjustment and
  large amount.

                                                   24
       EasyPay - Staff feedback
• Save time/effort to count coins and cash.
• Convenient as there are fewer steps.
• Faster cross-checking for each shift.
• User convenience.




                                              25
               EasyRegister
• Self-Registration of eligible non-CityU JULAC
  Library Card Holders
        Number of Annual Registration
               Registered Users from Other Libraries
1,600

                                                       1,521
1,500


              1,405
1,400



1,300



1,200



1,100



1,000
              2007/08                                  2008/09
        JULAC Registered Users from
          Other Libraries 2008-09
                       Registered Users from Other Libraries 2008-09
1,600   1,521                                                                1,523

1,400


1,200

                                                   1,025
1,000


 800


                567           596
 600


 400
                                         283                           272
                                                               245
 200


   -
        CityU   CUHK          HKBU      HKIEd       HKU       HKUST    LU    PolyU
Entrance by JULAC Card Holders
           2008-09
                   Entrance by JULAC Card Holders 2008-09


 50,000                                                             47,255
 45,000

 40,000

 35,000

 30,000   27,905

 25,000

 20,000

 15,000                                            13,226
                   9,239                 8,161
 10,000
                              5,424                         4,811
  5,000

     -
          CityU    CUHK       HKBU       HKIEd      HKU      LU     PolyU
     EasyRegister - Old Practice
• What is the old practice?
The paper application form

                 Chan Tai Man              陳大民
      B123456(A)          23456789         98765432
        83 Tat Chee Avenue, Kowloon Tong
   chantm@sample.edu.hk
Chan Tai Man




  Circulation Librarian
Chan Tai Man
     陳大民
  CUHK
 0011111
  Chan Tai Man
 1/2012
Each barcode carries a pre-
  created dummy patron
          record
• A pre-created dummy patron
  record with pre-input UNIV ID
  and P BARCODE
• JULAC card with this Barcode
  label stuck on it can borrow
  books immediately even without
  patron details
23/6 Chan Tai Man   CUHK   0011111   Chan Tai Man
Chan Tai Man
     陳大民
  CUHK
 0011111
  Chan Tai Man
 1/2012
• Not have enough time to key in
  all the information immediately
  on site over the counter
• Data entry done at backend
  office according to the user’s
  application form
     EasyRegister - Old Practice
•Drawbacks:
  • Time lag
  • User cannot access and view circulation account
    immediately
  • Possible human error
EasyRegister – Design (User Mode)
                                                                       Confirmation Screen
             Welcome Screen                                       Show user input data for double
           Press “Start” to begin                                             check.




                                         Continue
 No
                       Yes
                                                                 System create a patron record on
         User Identification Screen                               Innopac and print a temporary
        Questions to identify eligible                                  registration ticket
                    user



                                                    Edit again
 Quit                  Yes
                                                                            Final Reminder
               Input Screen                                            Inform user the whole
        For user to input/edit their                                 registration process is not
             personal details.                                    completed yet and ask them to
                                                                  take the temporary registration
                                                                        ticket to the Counter.

                                                                 The JULAC card registration process is
                                                                 not completed yet !!
EasyRegister – Design (Staff mode)
                         Retrieve Patron Record
                         By scan the temporary
     Ineligible user   barcode on the registration
                                  ticket


                           Display Patron Record
                       Circulation staff verify user’s
                                 input data
                                        Eligible user
                          Enable Patron Record
                        By replace the temporary         The JULAC card
                       barcode with the permanent        registration process is
                         one and save the record.        completed now !!
                   EasyRegister – Work Flow
Prepare dummy        Verify patron details   Input user          Contact user to
Patron record        and Issue barcode       personal details    update their
(Back End)           to patron               (Back End)          personal details
                                                                 (Back End)
Prepare barcode
(Back End)
                                                 Old Practice
User input their     Verify patron details   Contact user to
personal details     and Issue barcode       update their
and on-the-fly       to patron               personal details
create patron                                (Back End)
record

Prepare barcode
(Back End)
                                               New Practice
                                                                By Staff   By User
  EasyRegister - Implementation
• Development Tools (both User and Staff mode)
  – Fines Payment API
  – C#
  – Visual Studio .net
• Hardware Requirements
  – 1 x Desktop PC with keyboard and mouse.
  – 1 x Thermal printer
  – For staff mode, no additional hardware is needed
    because the program is installed on the Circulation
    Counter machines.
        EasyRegister - Installation
• One EasyRegister machine is installed next to the Circulation
  counter.
         EasyRegister - Benefits
• Value-added use of an existing product – Fines
  Payment API
• Streamline the application procedures
• Reduce human error
• Up-to-date information can be obtained
• Complete patron information are input immediately
• Patron can make full use of their record immediately
  right after registration
EasyRegister – Future Development
• EasyTicket:
As suggested by the Librarian, we shall start a
  feasibility study of using Octopus Card as
  JULAC Library Card holders’ access and
  borrowing at CityU Library.
EasyRegister - Future Development
We shall study:
• The interface between Octopus card readers and our
  access control system
• The interface between Octopus card readers and
  LMS system
• The interface between Octopus card readers and
  different self-check systems
• Development of programmes for the above
  interfaces
                   Conclusion
Three principles of the Book of Changes (易經) :


• 變易 change and transformation
• 簡易 easy and simplicity
• 不易 invariability: a constant definite order
                   Conclusion
Apply to Library Services:


• 變易 change : adapt to constant changes and
  transformation of the Library
• 簡易 easy : EasyService Applications
• 不易 invariability : User-oriented service
  model
Run Run Shaw Library

				
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