Microfiche & Microfilm

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I felt like I was stepping back in time in time tonight.  While doing some research for a paper, I came across something very nostalgic.  Something that I can’t remember using since the internet boomed. 

Do you remember Microfiche & Microfilms?  You know those little black films with whole books on them.  To read them, you have to use that dinosaur-looking viewing machine with the little magnified light and hazy opaque screen.  No digital zoom.  No flat screen quality.  No 64 bit color.  Black and white baby!

I felt like I was Julia Roberts in the Pelican Brief or Erin Brochavich (minus the big hair and enormous teeth) scanning through newspaper articles looking for clues to solve a mystery.  In reality, I was looking at material for college governance structures.  I know, I know, you are dazzled with intrigue and excitement.  A Hollywood block-buster in the making. 

But as I worked with those little microfiche, my mind kept thinking that I was back at Hancock County High School in the Media Center (a.k.a. the school library), being told to be quiet and not to loose those little films.  “They cost a lot of money, you know.” 

Now with the internet, digitial scanners, and online databases, the era of the microfiche may be coming to a close.  But I appreciated using those little films tonight.  Kind of like going back to the card catalog, the Dewey decimal system, and school pencil boxes.  Nostalgic and sweet.

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