What's Up with Prospector?

Good things often come to those who wait.  And you have been waiting a long time for the return of the Prospector service.  We have to assume that the original gold prospectors were patient folks much like library customers.  You may have given up, and for good reason, but we haven't!

The Library's previous automation system was connected to Prospector via a customized program that is no longer allowed by the system behind Prospector, requiring the creation of an entirely new connection process.  The effort to reconnect the Denver Public Library to Prospector has been technically challenging.  All parties involved have been working diligently to overcome integration issues, however, and together we have made significant progress.

We are actually blazing a trail for other libraries to use a standard protocol to connect two different circulation systems.  At the risk of getting too techie, we are implementing the NISO Circulation Interchange Protocol (NCIP) to connect Denver Public Library's system with the Prospector system.  Using standard communication and transfer of data between the systems is the modern way to achieve the interoperability necessary for both staff and customer functions in both systems.  This involves modifications by both vendors, followed by extensive testing by our very dedicated staff, and further modifications and more testing.  You get the idea.

We are making progress every week and look forward to announcing a start date as soon as we can.  Thanks for your patience, and don't put down that pan.  We'll find gold in the Prospector system yet!

Written by Michelle on November 30, 2012


Anonymous on December 6, 2012


HOORAY!!! I have missed being able to get some of my favorite
authors' books through prospector that DPL doesn't have. I used Prospector A LOT and really have missed it. Great news!

Anonymous on December 7, 2012


THANK YOU to all the library staff who are working so long and hard on this very difficult project. I know some behind the scenes technology issues are very difficult to work through, especially with the more folks it takes to fix the problem. You guys at DPL are great and we love you. I also know it takes a great deal of testing before going live. Keep up the great work you are doing for all us patrons.

And for the public: BE patience! They are working as hard as possible!

Anonymous on December 8, 2012


Can you get a library card from other libraries if you live and work in Denver?

Also, can someone tell me what the difference is between prospector and going inter-library loan? Is that service available at DPL now?


Yes, you can get a library card from many other libraries in Colorado if you have a public library card from your Colorado home library. You show up at the other library with your home library card and ID (dependent on which library) to do this.

Prospector is a regional resource sharing system in Colorado and Wyoming, so the items are limited to those owned at participating libraries. It is more direct for customers and staff so generally the items arrive more quickly and with less cost to the Library. We continue to provide Interlibrary Loan services while Prospector is unavailable and we will continue to provide those services after Prospector is back for Denver Public Library. Interlibrary Loan provides access to materials from around the world.


Thanks so much for the reply, Michelle! I now look forward to the return of Prospector as well!

HeidiB on December 12, 2012


Thanks for all your hard work on this issue, and for the update--unexpected, but welcome!

I, too, have been taking advantage of the Colorado Library Card/reciprocal card-holding in other districts. I use their online access to request items through Prospector that I then pick up at a branch of a nearby district, and then use the statewide courier system to return these items through my favorite DPL branch.

We are fortunate to live in a state with a will to collaborate, facilitate sharing, and provide some level of funding for these wonderful services. THANK YOU to all the wonderful librarians who work hard to provide such quality services!!

Anonymous on December 26, 2012


thank you so much for restoring and restrengthening the adit into the lode of information that is prospector. ore should I say that your persistence raises both the tonnage and grade of knowledge that is available to the hard-working information miner. pans are and were only the surface tools for the beginning of the gold rush. thanks again for the additional option into wisdom.

Anonymous on January 30, 2013


42 other users do not have your problems. A properly worded R.F.P would have prevented
this problem.


While we regret the length of time it has taken to bring Prospector back, the decision to make a selection for an integrated library system based on the needs of the organization for its primary business was a sound and well reasoned choice. Prospector use accounted for less than 1% of our circulation. We look forward to announcing the return of Prospector soon. Thanks for sharing your concerns.

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