Data Depot opens today as information center

March 13, 1996|By Dan Morse | Dan Morse,SUN STAFF

What costs $35,000, sits in The Mall in Columbia, provides automated information about libraries and will have its ribbon cut vTC this morning by Howard County Executive Charles I. Ecker?

Answer: The new Data Depot, an information service on the second floor of the mall. It's green and about the size of three telephone booths and features a keyboard durable enough to withstand soft drink spills.

Residents can use a computer keyboard and touch-screen commands to get applications for marriage licenses, access library services, read county job listings, learn about elected officials and more. Users also will be able to search the Internet on the Data Depot.

Officials will hold an opening ceremony for the machine at 9 a.m. today.

Yesterday, Anne Gantt, a project manager for Public Information Kiosk, the Germantown company that sells Data Depots, was smoothing a last-minute glitch in the dialing.

"Telecommunications snag," she said, before reporting the machine up and running.

Some services offered at the kiosk will cost money, such as faxing, photocopying and printing out tax forms.

Ms. Gantt said there are similar machines at the Annapolis Mall and the Montgomery Mall in Montgomery County and another machine is planned closer to Baltimore.

Pub Date: 3/13/96

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