Library Technology Timeline

From Clay Tablets, to Scriptoriums, to OPACs:
A chronology of the first use of a technology in a library

1945 - 1950
1950 - 1960
 
1960 - 1970
 
1980 - 1990
1990 - 2000
2000 - 2005
 
                                                   
 
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1970 - 1980
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1970
The on-line book order and fund accounting system developed by Oregon State Library called LOLITA was introduced in Mid-March of 1970

Source: Lancaster, F.W. (Ed.). (1972). LOLITA: An On-line Book Order and Fund Accounting System. Urbana, Illinios: University of Illinois Graduate School of Library Science Proceedings of the 1972 Clinic on Library Applications of Data Processing.


1971
Background information (1964) -- "The MEDLARS retrospective searches and SDI service were offline: that is, the search method used was to construct personal subject profiles in machine-readable form, batch these together, and run them centrally against the MEDLARS database. The next stage of development therefore was the conversion of systems from off-line to on-line."

(1971) - - “In 1971, the US National Library of Medicine implemented the first on-line version of MEDLARS, called MEDLINE. The conversion of MEDLARS to MEDLINE increased the use of this database in the United States from 20,000 searches a year to 20,000 searches a month.”

Source: Thompson, J. (1982). End of Libraries, p. 33.


1972
"The first U.S. development effort using a stand-alone minicomputer as a host system designed for library applications was funded at the University of Minnesota Bio-Medical Library in 1972 by a three-year National Library of Medicine grant. The system was called Minicomputer Library System (MILS), an acronym following in tradition of the Minnesota Union List of Serials (MULS)."

Source: Grosch, A. (1980). Minicomputers in Libraries 1979-80, p. 7.


1972
“Started in the late 1960’s and inaugurated in November 1972, BALLOTS (Bibliographic Automation of Large Library Operations using a Time-sharing System) is the first on-line, interactive system to support the day-to-day acquisition and cataloging operations of a group of academic libraries at Stanford University.”

Source: (1975, March). Journal of Library Automation, 8(1), p. 31 – 50.
ISSN 0022-2240


1975
“The first workable and successful minicomputer-based stand-alone circulation control system was initially intstalled at the Cleveland (Ohio) Public Library in 1975 by a commercial vendor which was named CLSI and later changed its name to CL Systems Inc."

Source: Grosch, A. (1980). Minicomputers in Libraries 1979-80, p. 3.


1978
The first VAX-11/780 got installed at Carnegie Mellon University. In 1978 it was installed at CERN in Switzerland and the Max Planck Institute in Germany.

Source: http://www.webmythology.com/VAXhistory.htm


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Last updated: 15 December 2004
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