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Electronic Library Catalogs
Many public and academic libraries use computer systems to help manage and control the basic processes of acquisition, cataloging, and the circulation of items (both books and journals) in their collections. There are a number of organizations that offer integrated software and hardware packages using the minicomputers.
Many libraries come together to form cooperatives and to develop shared databases records so that individual libraries did not have to create their own catalog records.
Library patrons can search the catalog by entering an author's name, the title of a book, or a subject term on a keyboard and view the results on a screen rather than looking through trays of catalog cards.
Many libraries in the world can be searched using the Internet. Library management systems are developed using software programs based on
- standard relational database management systems (such as Informix and Oracle),
- standard operating systems (like UNIX),
- Client/server technology using PCs.
Some of the companies providing Library management systems are
Endeavor Information Systems (Voyager),
Innovative Interfaces Inc. (Millennium),
Sirsi Corporation (UNICORN).
- Letters are sent out automatically when books are late.
- It is easier to see if a certain book is available.
- Search for information on borrowers
- Search for information on books
- Store (new) records of books
- Store records of borrowers
- Print out overdue reminders
- Calculate fines
- Identify reading habits of pupils