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Library looking into purchase of new microfilm machine

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Putnam County Library Board agreed during the monthly meeting Wednesday to invite a sales representative to speak about the purchase of a new microfilm machine.

The visit could come in December.

The new machine would have the capability of reading and scanning microfilm. Information could be downloaded and sent in e-mail, burned to a CD or stored to a flash drive.

After a year of vigilant planning, board members were advised slightly more than 20 percent of the 2008 budget is remaining.

As a tax-supported service, board members are struggling to keep the budget afloat from the delay in property tax payouts.

In other business:

* A small increase was reported in circulation and the bookmobile. There is a 28-percent increase in Internet usage.

* Library Director Alice Greenburg announced that the display cases in the library contain projects done by staff members.

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In today's market, it may make more sense to scan those microfilm records rather than investing in a new reader / printer.

A few things to consider:

- The records are permanent documents that you are going to need to maintain for the long term. Microfilm was initially expected to last for up to 100 years, but we have seen microfilm deteriorate in as little as 10 years if it is not stored in "ideal conditions"

- It will cost about $7,000 to purchase a microfilm reader printer and then another $1,000 per year (or so) to maintain that reader printer

- Plus, reader printers are bulky and take up a lot of space

550 rolls of microfilm can be scanned to digital for just about $11,000 (550 rolls X 2,000 images per roll X $.01 per image = $11,000).

Once the rolls are scanned your users will be able to review the records directly from computers and print necessary pages as needed.

- The records will be preserved for the long term with no further risk for deterioration

- The cost of maintaining the reader printer will be completely avoided

- You total investment over a 5 year period will actually be less than the cost of purchasing and maintaining a microfilm reader printer.

Digital Film Solutions specializes in converting microfilm records to digital.

You can read more about our microfilm conversion services online at http://www.digitalfilmsolutions.com/Micr...

Let me know if you have any questions.

Josh Nelson



-- Posted by DigitalFilmSolutions on Fri, Feb 6, 2009, at 10:15 PM

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