Friday, December 10, 2004

New York New York

Over the past twenty years, computer technology has radically changed day-to-day operations at most Registries of Deeds. Undoubtedly, there will be a time when it will be commonplace to do searches and document recording from the convenience of your office. Registries are organized similar to public libraries. The “Indexes are our “Card Catalog” and the “Records Book” the materials libraries store. In some ways, large,
well-funded libraries may be developing models that Registries will copy in the future. An example is taking place right now in a neighboring state. The newest books in the New York public library don’t take up any shelf space. They are electronic books. Card- holders simply point and click through the library’s collection ( The
E-book inventory includes best sellers; nonfiction, romance and self help guides. Patrons borrow a book for a set period, downloading them for reading on a computer. When the book is due the files are automatically locked out and returned to circulation for another user. Although only a month old, the idea is very popular. In the first eight days of operation over 1,000 digital books were checked out. E-books are freeing institutions from the limitations of physical location. Obviously, an electronic based library is less expensive to operate and more convenient for the consumer. Books can be borrowed 24/7 from anywhere with instant access. Over the past five years the implementation of technology in registries has taken a path that parallels that of the New York Public Library, remote use through digitalization. This seems to be wave of the future.

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