My part-time library job exposes me to readers, many of whom suggest favorite authors. I also see users of public computers forced to master enough technology to get a pay slip or IRS forms.
Following last month's column on good reads, I'm still getting suggestions from readers like Joanne Rich of Nitro, who recommended other novels by West Virginians, among them "Child of the Mountains" by Marilyn Sue Shank and "Shrapnel" by Marie Manilla.
"In spite of the title, the latter is about a family - a grandfather who comes to live with his daughter's family in Huntington," Rich said. Certainly a timely topic.
Rich also praised "The Midwife of Hope River" and earlier memoirs by Patricia Harman and books by William Hoffman, formerly of Charleston. "No shortage of good books," she said in an email.
Rich obviously is comfortable with a computer.
Others are not, particularly those with no home computer or broadband service options.
Dial-up service is, well, only serviceable. It is incredibly slow for complex websites and is the reason I look at social media sites or electronic greeting cards only when I'm at the library.
It's also the reason I called the federal Office of Personnel Management after we received our annual statement of pension and health insurance adjustments for my husband, a Department of Interior retiree.
We almost missed the notice on the back of the lengthy document. This year is the last we will be mailed our retiree (1099-R) statement for the preceding year. Starting next year, we'll have to get it electronically.
What about those with no Internet service, I wondered. I called the toll-free information number I found in tiny print above the address.
The staff member who took my call told me the notification failed to state that retirees will be able to request the form through the U.S. Postal Service.
Of the roughly 1.5 million federal retirees and survivors, I'm willing to bet there are a good many in rural areas who have no computer, no broadband available or are reluctant to sign a multi-year contract for satellite Internet service.
We see an increasing number of people who come to the library to use public computers because it is the only way they can get pay slips or other financial information.