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The change in form of documents from book to non book material such as micro films and more recently CD-ROM and multi media interactive computer words and text files on internet has influenced a traditional forms of catalogues. Physical forms of catalogues have undergone a drastic changes with the result. Various non conventional sophisticated forms of physical forms of catalogues have been developed to make the work of information retrieval exhaustive and expedition.


The different types of non conventional forms are as follows, Visible index form Micro form On-line OPAC form Machine readable form ( MARC )


Visible index catalogue consists of strips mounted on a frame of cards held flat hinged and with edge of each cards producing so as to make the heading visible. The cards are usually of the size 12.5 20 cm; the card is inserted into a hinged Kraft pocket exposing the top portion, these pockets are in a specially prepared steel cabinet Office type equipment which may consist of strips mounted in a frame are cards held flat, hinged and with the edge of each card projecting to make the heading visible.

In the visible index, it is easy to internet the new entries, so it can easily be kept of up-to-date. It is easy to consult. Filling is easy. It is easy to guide. Much member of entries can be seen at a glance.

It is difficult to produce multiple copies. The insertion of new entries will be some what in convent. The tray must be pulled out to its fullest extent and the require index is to be searched. So it is difficult to consult.

The catalogue in which entries are generally reduce printed upon film. A suitable reader which magnifies the films and project it on to a screen is required microfilm may be on a single reel but more usually it is housed in cassettes. It containing two reels so that the film can be would back words and forwards with in its container.

Micro form catalogue entries are greatly reduce and printed upon a film or fiche. The microform catalogue cannot be ready by naked eyes. A suitable microform readers magnifies the reduce images on the film or fiche and project them and to a screen is necessary a form consulting a microform catalogue.

Microform catalogues are easy to use and maintain. These are compact and occupy less space in the library. They are portable and accessible to users depending upon number of copies of catalogues and the machines available. It is easy to keep up-to date Multiple copies can be produced easily.

Only one person can use a microform reader at any one time It is a costly affair for small libraries It requires a machine to read These can not be used without microform readers. These requires special care and protection form heat, light and sun.

OPAC is the newest most sophisticated catalogue format is stored in a computer memory and displayed an a monitor ,OPAC can be accessed via a computer terminal such catalogue allow any person to brows the catalogue to know whether library has got specific title of document and if library is using an integrated library software package. Even it is easy to know the person holding the book .hence reminder can be effected .in other words in OPAC user is connected directly to the information sources.

It is easily updataed. It can easily provide cross reference for authors and subjects. New access points and search capabilities can be added at any times. Studies of pattron use of operating online catalogues show a high level of users satisfaction.

The catalouge should be easy and convenient to use. Catalouge should be compact in shape. To keep the catalouge upto dated. Safety of catalouging data on harddisk problem. Systems failure hinders access to the catalouge and hence the collection.


In a machine readable catalouge entries are rendered a format which permits input and storage on magnetic tape or magnetic disk manipulation in a computer. MARC format , the history of format goes back to the late 1960, when the library catalouges and other research libraries recognised that computerprocessingof biblographic information had to be employed in order to solve problems such as cataloguing backlogs,and to provide better services to readers.This let to adoption of the MARC-I communication format for exchange of bibliographic data amoung libraries in 1967.


It can be kept updated with speed and efficeincy. It can search for any bibliographical element such as authors, subjects, price etc. It is a user friendly. It can be easily multipled.

The any disadvantages of computerised catalouges particularly in india, this is the accute shortage of man power to design and operate machine-readable catalouges, usres should be turned to the computerised systems to exploit to fully the capability of machine readable catalouge.