Reading computers, new tools for readers and library researchers were recently installed in the Yorba Linda District Library, 18262 Lemon Drive.
It is not possible to sit down in front of one of the six ROM (read only memory) readers located throughout the library, switch on the machine and by turning a knob, scan the COM-cat (computer output microfilm catalog). The Com-cat is an author, title and subject catalog on microfilm in an easy-to-read alphabetical format.
At the present, the catalog contains the holdings of the public libraries of Placentia, Anaheim, Buena Park with the books of the Yorba Linda Library being added gradually. It is revised three times a year with weekly updates available on microfiche in the reference room.
Anyone who ahs used a dictionary has the skills need to operate a ROM. The machine has two buttons on the right hand side of the reader, one for fast forward and one for fast backward wind. The red pointer on the side shows the user which part of the alphabet is on the screen.
There is also a knob for fine tuning which helps pinpoint the material.
Books located in another library can be requested for a small fee.
Sometimes, depending on the workload, it may be possible for the librarian at the desk to use the computer to find out if the wanted material is at the library which owns it or if it is in circulation. If the book is in the library the patron may want to telephone, reserve the book and pick it up himself.
The ROMs and the COM-cat are a firm step toward the library of the future.
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