The District Court in the capital of Kansas is switching off its HP 3000 this week, a process that's going to pull the district clerk's office competely out of service over the first two days of May. The Topeka court's IT department said the alternative to replacing the 3000 software would be going back to paper and pen. The project will knock all court computing offline -- both old and new systems -- for one work week.
"Anyone who needs to file or pick up documents should do so between 8 AM and noon on Thursday and Friday," the court advised Topeka-area citizens on its website. The Topeka courts have been using HP 3000s since the 1980s. Four years ago the court commissioners voted to spend $207,800 for FullCourt software to replace the 3000 application. The court has been paying for the software -- which will be loaded with data May 5-9 -- over three years at no interest. All court data is being extracted and replaced during the workweek of May, when only jury trials, emergency hearings and essential dockets will be heard.
The court is predicting a go-live date of May 12. The HP 3000 will be shut off Friday, May 2, at 5 PM, according to a schedule "that may fluctuate."
The HP 3000 has "outlived its life expectancy, making it essential that we either move on to another system or we go back to paper and pen," according to a statement on the court's website. Converting data is the crucial part of the migration.
No other district court in the state of Kansas has attempted such a challenge. This data conversion is one of the most important attributes of this project and is carefully being implemented by continuously and repeatedly checking thousands of data elements to ensure that all data converted is “clean” data which is essential to all users. When we finally “go live,” we would sincerely appreciate your careful review of data as you use the system.
32-year-old Justice Systems of Alberquerque sells FullCourt. The latest marketing materials for the software company's Professional Services include a testimonial from Chief Information Technical Officer Kelly O'Brien of the Kansas Judicial Branch. The court's announcements did not break out the cost of software versus the cost of professional migration services.
Chief Judge Evelyn Wilson said in a statement, “We know this system affects the entire community. There are bound to be some bumps in the road. While the court has tried to take into consideration the different issues that may arise, there is no way we can address all of them. Initially, we anticipate that productivity may be slower as people get accustomed to the new system. We’ll do our best to accommodate you, and we ask you to do the same."
The replacement software includes features such as e-filing of documents. Wyoming state courts have also implemented FullCourt, although an HP 3000 wasn't shut down there.