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I have used both CD-Newsbank and the Newsbank Periodical Index on CD
which directs you to the microfiche product.  They are totally different.
I would like to have them both, but don't.  The CD-Newsbank is much
easier to manage.  It does not cover as many newspapers.  However, it is
great for thorough coverage of the subjects it covers.  We have had
inservice from our representative, who pointed out some useful
features.  For instance, by using the Browse function you can see choose
a particular publication.  She went through the list of publications with
us, point out certain publications and particularly news services which
had good coverage of certain areas.  For instance, one news service has
lots of Asian coverage, so when kids need something on an Asian country
you can enter that source.  We had kids who had to environmental reports
on pollution in the Houston Ship Channel choose the Houston Chronicle as
their source, combining that with the other search terms.  Unfortunately,
I did not write down all the specialized coverage she told us about.
Kids use the browse function to look at subjects, too.  You have to
explain to kids what the lead paragraph is and why a search confined to
that is narrower than one that looks at all text.  It is amazing that
there are sometimes kids who say they don't know what the headline is!

Where I used to work, we had the complete Newsbank, including Names in
the News and Review of the Arts. Although the news coverage in microfiche
is broader, I don't miss that like I miss Names and Review.  Our kids
used that a lot. Names in the News was used constantly, also the sections
of Review that dealt popular TV and music.  If you have kids doing a lot
of reports in those areas,it is especially useful.  There is nothing in
the CD product that is remotely like that.  However, we always had a
problem with getting the fiche refiled.  It was also left all over the
place.  Sometimes a bunch of cards would be filed incorrectly and they
were lost and gone forever or until we finally got around to going
through the drawers card by card by card.  Student aides absolutely HATE
to file Newsbank.  There is no comparison in the management of the two.

The Spanish language on CD-Newsbank is a bonus.  Those are different
publications not found in the English.  Our ESL kids, as well as
Spanish-language classes, have found that useful.

Diane Durbin

On Tue, 21 Jun 1994, Gail M. Szeliga wrote:

> Any thoughts or comments on CD-Newsbank Comprehensive or Newsbank
> Periodical Index?
> We are committing many dollars to these products and I would like to
> hear pros and cons from anyone who has had experience with them.
> Please e-mail me directly at ny000999@mail.nyser.net.
> Thanks.
> Gail Szeliga
> Union Endicott High School

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