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As the major forms of storage media are tapes, floppies and disks, there are offline data
entry devices for each of these. They are briefly described below.
A key-to-tape device, also known as magnetic tape encoder, is designed to record keyed
data directly on to a magnetic tape. The device has a keyboard, a display monitor and a
slot to insert the tape. An operator keys in the source data using the keyboard. To
facilitate data entry, a blank form with appropriate fields is displayed on the monitor's
screen. The entered data is stored temporarily in a buffer (temporary storage area) by the
device and displayed on the monitor for visual checking of its correctness. If an error is
made in entering a data item, the operator can back-space and re-enter it. When the
operator is convinced that the data entered in the form is correct and wants to store it on
the tape, he/she presses a control key, which causes the data to be stored on the tape from
Magnetic tape encoders are available for recording data magnetically on reels, on
cassettes, and on tape cartridges. The magnetic tape reels produced by key-to-tape
systems are in a computer-compatible format for subsequent direct data input into a
computer. However, data on cartridges and cassettes often are transferred to higher-speed
media, such as full sized reel of magnetic tape or magnetic disk, for efficient data transfer
to the computer.
The device has a keyboard, a display monitor and a slot to insert the floppy disk. Data is
entered exactly in the same manner as described for the key-to-tape device.
Both the key-to-tape and the key-to-floppy devices can also be used to verify the
correctness of the data, which has already been stored on a tape/floppy. For this, the
machine is operated in a "verify" mode and another operator keys in the same data from
the source document with the tape/floppy, having the pre-stored data, inserted in the slot.
In this mode, the data keyed in and st...
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- Spring '14