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Penrith Library September 17, 2008

Posted by ctcoberon in Uncategorized.

While I was in Penrith I used the Internet services at the local library and the most impressive thing about their Internet service was in the way you paid and used the service. First, you must obtain a special type of “credit-card” from the administration desk, you then go to a machine which looks very much like a parking meter, you swiped your card, and you feed the machine either a $5, $10, $20 or $50 note (the machine dose not give change) and once you have put your money in and pressed the finished button your card is ready for use. You then go to one of the designated Internet computers and swipe your new card in the card-reader attached to the computer’s keyboard. The computer screen immediately acknowledges you have log-on and gives you access to the Internet via Microsoft Internet Explorer (IE7). At the top or bottom of the screen is a small unobtrusive clock-like display which shows how much time you had left on your card.

The cost of the Internet service at the Penrith Library was initially $10/hour, but around mid August 2008 it was reduced to $5/hour. Using this system has many advantages! It allows the customers to pay and use the Internet for any length of time they so choose plus, it also allows customers to top-up their card and to come back anytime and use the available credit on the card. It also reduces the workload staff as the credit-card system also works by deducting other related charges like for copying and or printing.

I should also point out the Penrith Library Internet computers were configured in such a way that no modifications can be made to how you view the Internet on their 17” LCD monitors and restrictions were also placed on which sites you could access. Overall the Penrith Library has an excellent automatic method by which users can look after themselves when using the Internet and other document services without the staff needing to be watchful. The customer base of the Penrith Library was very similar to that at our own Oberon CTC and Library. However, the Penrith Library does not allow for the logging-on of customer’s computers nor do they provide any problem solving services, as we do and therefore the personal service provided by your Oberon CTC is unique amongst Internet provides within the region.  

If you are new to computers or are seeking to learn more or maybe you need a little help why not come to one of our weekly classes (or all three if you wish). Tuesdays is for beginners with Maree Arrow, Wednesday with Julie Stott is for beginners and intermediate users who would like to know how to use the Internet and email more efficiently and Thursdays with Ron Lardner is for those who would like to know more about the wizardry, gadgets and other exciting processes associated with computers.

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