Author Topic: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?  (Read 730 times)

Offline River Tyne Lass

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Re: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?
« Reply #36 on: Tuesday 11 June 19 18:44 BST (UK) »
I have just remembered that Isabel H said the same thing as Guy regarding the change of lens.  Perhaps I should have suggested this to the staff earlier.  Hopefully, someone from I.T. might let them know if it does turn out to be a lens problem.

If I do get this issue sorted out eventually, it might turn into a positive in that others may also find out how to overcome this problem.
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Offline Sc00p

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Offline KGarrad

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Re: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?
« Reply #38 on: Tuesday 11 June 19 19:54 BST (UK) »
I notice it is a dual microfiche/microfilm scanner/reader, I cannot see what make it is but the ones I have used require the lense to be changed between reading microfilm & microfiche.
Has this been done?

Cheers
Guy

Guy,  If it's SL-Touch then you don't change anything on the microfilm reader itself ;D
It's all handled by the software ::)

I use SL-Touch at the Manx Museum, but don't use it for Newspapers.
That side is all handled by the iMuseum.im website.
Newspapers already all scanned in to a database - ready for searching!
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Offline Tickettyboo

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Re: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?
« Reply #39 on: Tuesday 11 June 19 20:26 BST (UK) »
Having read the thread, though I have no experience of the readers you are using, I am left wondering if the part of the process that is 'modern' is the display.

the source of the image still appears to be a microfilm, that hasn't changed. So at a guess, whatever means were employed previously to read it (different lens to suit the resolution at which the original was microfilmed) would still apply at the 'business end' where the current equipment interfaces with the microfilm.

Once that is in place then I'd expect the image you see on the screen will be easier to read/ zoom in and out of.

<this is similar to the problem with reading newspapers online that were originally microfilmed at a resolution that requires a stronger lens to view them on an old reader - if they are digitised without first using a lens to suit, then zooming just makes the whole image bigger and blurrier- not clearer>

and I would add, that whichever IT dept installed the new equipment without giving the staff proper training as to how to use it, is at fault here.

Folk who staff archives etc are not usually employed for their  IT knowledge, their role requires different skills . They need/deserve help to understand new equipment. Its very unfair to install new equipment and swan off into the sunset without ensuring the staff know how to use it correctly.

Boo



Offline Guy Etchells

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Re: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?
« Reply #40 on: Wednesday 12 June 19 06:38 BST (UK) »
Thanks Guy, for this suggestion.  No lens was changed.  However, at this library they only have microfilms not fiche.  However, I will mention this to them next week in case it might turn out to be a lens problem.  Staff did find out that it is possible to get a larger view by turnng the image on its side.  But I don't want to have to sit with my head cocked one side all the time when I am researching. :-\

This sounds like zoom is controlled by the software (turning a newspaper image on its side makes the long edge horizontal allowing a slightly larger image to fit on the screen).

Instead of trying to view the entire page on one screen view the page vertically and zoom in using the + key to enlarge and the - key to reduce. You may find fitting the image size to the width of the screen allows you to read the image text whilst only having to scroll slightly for the bottom section of the page.

Another way round would be to save the relevant pages to usb stick and read at your leisure at home on your computer.

Cheers
Guy
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Offline River Tyne Lass

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Re: Does anyone know how to use a modern microfilm reader?
« Reply #41 on: Wednesday 12 June 19 09:46 BST (UK) »
Thank you all for these responses - I will certainly try
the + option when I return next week.  And thanks too for the link Sc00p - this looks very user friendly and I will certainly be looking through this to upskill on my knowledge - I certainly think I am going to need this.

The staff did their best to help yesterday.  They even put some baptism records on - these showed fine - but no matter which new computer I went on the newspaper shrunk in size.  If I tried to make the newspaper bigger by zooming most of the page was zoomed out.  Really quite frustrating.  I told staff I was going to go on RootsChat for help.  At the finish, the staff said they would try to contact the I.T. people about this issue.  I think the staff basically know how to work the machines but are at a losd to know what to do if a trouble-shooting problem like this occurs.

Personally, I don't like these new machines wherever these are - I think they are more 'state of the clart' than state of the art and the acquirement of them is more cause for commiseration than celebration. :-\

I do feel badly about expressing this negative view as I know shedloads of money is invested in these new models in the hope of enhancing experience.  However, I speak as I find and do find it perplexing that the old machines are much more user friendly than the new ones.  Surely, the newer models should be the better ones (easier) and not the other way around?  I hope I get to develop a more positive view of these new contraptions in the future, but I must say I am not holding my breath.
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Offline River Tyne Lass

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Just an update - I feel like I have got a reprieve from having to use the modern technology!

I have found out today that the old microfilm reader has been fixed!! :D

Just as well, as it turns out to be a 'computer says no' situation according to the technology people.  For some reason it turns out that you just can't view a whole page at once on the new machines at the library.  It was explained to me why, but I'm afraid I just developed a sort of brain fuzz like I usually do in 'computer says no' situations and I just darted off to my old beloved microfilm reader .. very grateful! ;)
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Offline Treetotal

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Thanks for the update RTL...Pleased that you got a positive outcome and that it's a technical problem and not your lack of understanding...the old ones are the best  ;)
Carol
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