the system will periodically inform the boater of the latest in river conditions, special deals at river base camps, and other special events.

SYSTEM FLEXIBILITY

Overall, Harris and Parks promoted the technological flexibility of Illinois' new tourism system. By maintaining a single product database, IBOT is able to deal with new delivery and distribution systems as technology arises. Separate databases make this difficult, but with a single database, delivery systems like kiosks, Web site changes, and upgrades at the call center are manageable. IBOT can make simple changes to the database to incorporate new delivery systems as they hit the market.

The system's simplicity also allows other Illinois agencies to take part in promoting Illinois as a travel destination. IBOT is currently hooked up with a number of sister agencies, including the Department of Natural Resources, the Historic Preservation Agency, and the Department of Transportation. State agencies involved with advertising and public relations will eventually be networked as well. This state connectivity gives future Illinois tourists the greatest amount of quality information long before they cross the state border.

John Kost runs the State and Local Services Group at Federal Sources Inc. Previously, he was Michigan's CIO.

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