CD-ROM Technology: World Scenario and Indian Experience

S. Subba Rao

Central Leather Research Institute, Madras-600 020


The compact disk read only memory (CD-ROM) technology is available only for about last ten years and has become really popular in the last five years. CD-ROM is one of the several optical systems, including CD-interactive, CD-video, optical cards, write once and read many times (WORM) and erasable discs. It is the one that holds the most promise for information handlers viz. librarians and publishers.

The potentiality of the CD-ROM lies in its compactness (12 cm diameter and 1.2 mm thickness), portability, reduced shelf space, maintenance cost and durability upto 100 years. The exciting features of CD-ROM are its ability to play a wide repertoire of material viz. books, periodicals, directories, education materials, games, movies, music, communication modes data types include animation, graphics, software, sound, text, video and capacity to hold upto 660 mega bytes of information (over 470 1.44 MB floppy disks; upto 18 hours sound; upto 700 million characters of text; upto 74 min. of movies or other video). Table 1 provides the cost comparisons per MB with other media.

Table 1 : Cost Comparison per MB with other Media
Media Cost per Mega Byte (in US$)
Removable Hard Disk 15.00
Hard Disk 10.00
Paper 4.00
Floppy Disk 1.00
Microfiche 0.75
Magnetic Tape 0.25
WORM Disk 0.13
CD-ROM 0.02

The cost of production and usage of CD-ROM is also cheap. It costs only a few dollars per disc to duplicate a CD-ROM title in a small number. In higher quantities (10,000 or more), the cost goes down to less than $ 1.00 per disc. With a storage capacity equivalent to 250,000 pages of paper, publishing on CD instead of paper can save upto six trees for each disc published.

The large storage capacity and the read only nature of the CD-ROM disc make it an ideal medium for information storage and retrieval. The publishers intend to publish materials in some form of permanency that could be free from modifications by the user and with cost effectiveness in the form of CD-ROMs. Similarly librarians aim to preserve intellectual heritage of mankind and disseminate the same over the years and centuries through CD-ROMs.

Growth of CD-ROM Technology

Over a decade the CD-ROM technology has seen unimaginable developments. The statistical analysis presented in this paper is based on the CD-ROM Directory 1995 (14th Edition) published by TFPL, London. The TFPL Directory listed 9551 CD-ROM databases of 1900 publishers from 390 countries. These databases have been created by 2445 database providers. The general statistics on CD-ROM technology have been presented at Annexure I. About 130 journals and newsletters cover the literature on CD-ROM technology, out of which 102 are in English and 56 with ISSN. More than 20 secondary services index the literature on the developments and applications of this technology. Over 104 international conferences were conducted in the year 1994 and in 1995 the number has grown to 151. More than 200 books on CD-technology have been published by more than 100 publishers.

Database Scenario

Data Type

The CD-ROM databases have been grouped into 33 types, as per the TFPL Directory (Table 2). There has been an overlap between full text and reference, multimedia and images, etc., still one can observe the dominance of full text with 35.76% followed by images with 32.00%, multimedia with 27.97%. Interestingly the bibliographic CD databases stand at 7th with 12.34% share.

Table 2 : CD Databases by Data Type

Data Type Database Nos. Share %

Audio 1689 17.68

Bibliographic 1179 12.34

Full Text 3416 35.76

Graphics 2023 20.96

Images 3057 32.00

Manuals 171 1.79

Multimedia 2672 27.97

Numeric/Statistics 623 6.52

Programs 793 8.30

Reference 1506 15.76

Video 560 5.86

Subject Coverage

The subject index part of the title database of the TFPL Directory lists 270 subjects. However, there seems to be an overlap between many subject categories say for example between Aerospace, Aircraft, Aviation Industry and Space. A wide number of databases available in different subject categories. The closely related subject were grouped while presenting the statistics. Notable figures are those of Education/ Training/ Education Aids/ Learning (1416), General Interest/ leisure/ Entertainment/ Recreation (1235), Games (1043), Business/ Company/ Credit/ Import & Export/ Market Research/ Product Information (960), Law/ Civil/ Criminal/ EC/ International/ Judicial/ Legislation(935), Computer Industry/ Languages/ Manuals/ Programs/ SW/ Networking (880), Photo Libraries (760), Photography(669) and History (625).

Publishing Countries

Around 45 countries have started publishing CD-ROM databases. The Annexure III shows that the industry is dominated by USA with 49.90% titles, followed by UK (16.06%), Germany (12.25%) and Canada (6.79%). Evidently nine countries have published more than 100 titles and seven countries between 30 and 100 databases, six countries between 10 and 30, while the rest account less than 10 databases each as on June 1995. Interestingly, Pakistan has published nine databases and some of the third world countries have opened their account.

Producers of Databases

As it is evident, 1990 CD-ROM publishers are responsible for 9551 titles (Annexure IV). Silver Platter Inc. is the market leader with more than 181 titles to its credit. The publishing job of Compact Cambridge and Wilson Disc was taken over by Silver Platter. Philips Media Electronic Publishing follows Silver Platter with concentration on multimedia and interactive databases. Dialog has to its credit with 65. Some of the databases have been published by more than one producer.

Database Languages

CD-ROM databases have been published in as many as 49 languages with the dominance of English with 6638 (69.50%) titles followed by German 1279 (13.39%), French 729 (7.63%), Spanish 582 (6.09%), Italian 434 (4.54%), Japanese 275 (2.87%) and Dutch 170 (1.77%) as listed in Annexure V.

Update Frequency

The update frequency of CD-ROM titles depends upon many factors that includes nature of database, obsolescence of the value of information, affordability by publishers and users, etc. The dominance of source and directory type of CD-ROM databases has resulted in increase in the number of databases updated either quarterly or annually or irregularly. Quarterly updating is higher due to bibliographical databases. The figures in Table 3 indicate maximum number of databases updated quarterly with 898 (9.4%) titles followed by 877 (1.18%) on annual and monthly with 531 (5.55%). The databases updated weekly or fortnightly are usually news magazines and obviously their products are expensive.

Table 3 : Frequency of Updates of CD-ROM Databases

Frequency Database Nos. Share %

Weekly 37 0.38

Fortnightly 21 0.21

Monthly 531 5.55

Quarterly 898 9.40

Twice per year 442 4.62

Annual 877 9.18

Irregular 1235 12.93


The price range of CD-ROM databases starts from US $ 1 to 10, 000. Majority of the titles (5325) available at a cost range of US $ 1 to 500. This low cost is attributed to the use by school children. The prices of 767 databases vary from US $ 1001-5000. The costlier databases are in the range of US $ 5000 and above, that accounts only 2.07% (Table 4).

The buyers are put into lot of confusion due to various pricing policies by various publishers depending upon whether one is getting on lease or on purchase basis, single user or LAN or WAN environment, different price depending upon frequency of updates, individual or an institution, public/school/academic library, current alone or plus retrospective discs (2 to 4 years). Tactically bundled prices have also been announced by many companies with a set of databases in a particular subject area or complete package with CD-Workstation, databases and other equipment.

Table 4: Price Range of CD Databases

Price Range Database Nos. Share %

Free 38 0.39

US $ 1-100 4022 42.11

US $ 101-500 1303 13.64

US $ 501-1000 607 6.35

US $ 1001-5000 767 8.03

US $ 5000+ 198 2.07

No Price Given 2679 28.04

Hardware and Software Scenario


Totally 17 varieties of hardware platforms are required. The hardware platforms required to run CDA is dominated by IBM-PC compatible system with 6820 (71.40%) databases. This is followed by Apple Macintosh with 3235 (33.80%). About 8% of the databases can run on both IBM-PC and Apple Macintosh. Rest of the databases can run on various systems that may account for about 30% of databases (Table 5).

Table 5 : Computers Required for CD Dabatabases

Computer Database Nos. Share %

IBM PC or Compatible 6820 71.40

Apple Macintosh 3235 33.80

MPC 824 8.62

CD-I 518 5.42

Electonic Book Player 195 2.04

Acorn 107 1.12

Video CD 105 1.09

CD TV 72 0.75

FUJITSU (FM Towns) 73 0.76

3DO 99 1.03

MMCD 48 0.50

Turbo Grafx 30 0.42

VIS 16 0.16

Photo CD 38 0.39

SEGA CD 28 0.29

Others 339 4.77

Operating System

Totally 14 different OSs are required. Majority of the databases 5267 (55.14%) can run on MS-DOS followed by Windows with 4164 (43.59%) and Apple HFS 3195 (33.45%) as evident from Table 6. Only 224 (2.35%) databases can run on UNIX. Compared to last year though there is an increase in the number of databases that can run on DOS from 3057 to 5267 but there is decrease in percentage from 65.88 to 55.14. On the other hand, requirement for WINDOWS and Apple HFS has increased from 410 to 4164 and 959 to 3195 respectively.

Table 6: Operating Systems required for CD Databases

Operating System Database Nos. Share %

MS-DOS 5267 55.14

Windows 4164 43.59

Apple HFS 3195 33.45

CDRTOS 418 4.37

EB/EBG/EBXA 195 2.04

UNIX 224 2.35

RISC 110 1.15

FUJITSU 68 0.71

OS/2 75 0.78

3DO 74 0.77

Modular Windows 30 0.31

Others 219

CD Drives and Access Time

Tremendous developments have taken place in CD drive technology. About 15 makes of CD drives are available. Many a time a drive purchased could not be used for a new database procured. However, the emergence of ISO 9660 standard has given a great relief. As a result, nearly 75% of the databases can run on any ISO 9660 drives as is evident from the Annexure VI. Apple Macintosh drives are required by 2943 databases followed by CD-I with 523 databases and Electronic Book Player with 195 databases. Multimedia have their own requirements of drives with specific features.

The CD-ROM drive population in the world is estimated at 20 million installed units. The quad-speed CD-ROMs (with 640 kb and about 160 ms access time) are the industry standard of 1994, but a new crop of six-speed CD-ROM drives with 900 Kbps data transfer rates have come into market from TEAC, NEC Technologies, and Wearnes. These six-speed drives appeal to multimedia aficionados and network managers who want to improve performance from their CD-ROM jukebox towers. As many as 79 models of different companies have access time < 250 ms as presented in Annexure VII.

Hardware Manufacturers

The TFPL Directory lists a total of 93 manufacturers of CD drives including jukeboxes, changers and adapters. An idea about the Companies with more number of models can be formed by browsing through Annexure VIII.

Companies in CD Business/Activities

The rapid development in CD technology and its application to various fields have given opportunities for a number of companies. Annexure IX provides a glimpse of few important activities out of a total of 53.

Latest Developments

High Density CD-ROM

The ten companies viz Toshiba, Matsushita, Sony Corp, Philips Electronics, Time Warner, Pioneer Electronic, JVC, Hitachi, Mitsubishi & Thomson, have worked to develop a sequel to the compact disc that could hold full-length movies, high quality music and computer data. The new format named DVD (Digital Video Disc) will eventually replace VCRs, CD players and computer CD-ROMs. The new disc looks as compact discs but is double sided. Each side with 4.7 GB of space that can hold 133 minutes of video or the equivalent of eight CDs of music. The capacity can be quadrupled to about 18 GB, due to the new standard incorporating double sided and double layer options. A single DVD player can potentially play different discs containing music, movies and computer data including current CDs and CD-ROMs.

Indian Scenario

The CD-ROM industry in India is broadening its base with a steep fall in prices, aiming for a brighter future. It now anticipates a growth of 100-200% during 1995 when compared to 5-10% of last year. The CDs commercial production started in 1994 and several players involved in developing multimedia software. The CD-ROM drive population in India has been estimated at 30,000 installed units by the end of 1995-96. At the current rate of growth every second PC will have a CD drive. The prediction for 1996-97 would be around 60,000 drives. The costs of the drives are between $ 75 to $ 100 for basic and high end models. The CD titles costs between Rs. 500 to 1000 and a specialized one between Rs. 3000 to 5000. The per centage CD-ROM sale in India constitutes 80% from software packages while 20% from games, databases and education including recreation.

CD Databases

CD-ROM databases have been playing a very important role to bridge the information isolation between the developed and developing countries. CD-ROM technology in India is getting more and more popular. As many as 20 CD-Networking facilities are available with various institutions. As indicated in Annexure X, some of the popular CD-ROM databases include MEDLINE (65) followed by CAB abstracts (30), AGRIS (25), COMPENDEX+ (25). The AEROSPACE Database that was banned for Indian users till recently is now subscribed by 4 institutions. CD Publishing facility is available with more than three agencies. INSDOC has brought out CD-ROM version of NUCSSI. The PID will be marketing the CSIRs databases covering pharmaceuticals, perfumery, tanning and surfactant industries. More than 20 vendors are competing with each other in marketing CD-ROM databases, drives, software, networking facilities and providing maintenance services.

Role of Governmental Agencies

NISSAT/DSIR is playing an important role in conducting and supporting the workshop/training programs and CD-ROM Users' meets for the benefit of library & information professionals, users and vendors. National Informatics Centre, New Delhi has acquired more than 20 CD-ROM databases and is providing CD-ROM based services in a networked environment for the benefit of researchers and academicians all over the country especially in the area of medicine using MEDLINE databases. The remote logging to those databases is possible through their NICNET. NIC also has established CD-publishing facility. The libraries and information centres of CSIR laboratories have acquired about 32 CD-ROM titles altogether. The same is the case with other establishments like DESIDOC, ISRO, ICMR, ICAR, AEC, etc. While a number of institutions have started acquiring CD-ROM databases, there is an urgent need of rationalization of their acquisitions for avoiding the duplications, wherever possible. Other organizations like INSDOC, DESIDOC, etc have been conducting training programs on CD-ROM technology. Multimedia is picking up at a faster rate, which is evident from the established multimedia institutes.

Custom Duty and Copyright

Though the CD-ROM technology is picking up very fast in our country, problems still exists in importing CD-drives and CD-ROM databases. Although the CD-ROM databases are the replicas of their equivalent hard copy or microfiche versions, just because they are in optical media, customs duty becomes essential. Attempts have been madeat the national level on different forums to convince the concerned authorities in this direction. As on now, the customsduty is at 68% for importing CD-drives apart from other expenses like insurance, clearing charges, etc and 25% for CD-ROM databases. However, government funded R&D institutions are required to pay only 15% for CD-ROM databases. The academic institutions are exempted from paying any duty and the government funded R&D institutions can use their pass books issued by Department of Science & Technology to clear their consignments to avail nil customs duty.

Another important issue is concerned with copyrights. The fact that, after acquiring a CD-ROM database whether a literature search service can be offered to others and if yes whether one can charge, is still not clear. There is a need to have a convention of all the agencies concerned at national level for finding solutions to these problems.

Indian CD-ROM Products


The complete library of direct taxes decisions on CD-ROM from Odyssey Technologies Ltd, Madras has been launched in New Delhi on June 15 and in Madras on August 26, 1995 with a price tag of Rs. 19000 per CD.

TAEXPERT is a comprehensive electronic reference manual for manual for direct tax decisions of various High Courts and the Supreme Court. This manual contains the full unabridged text of 12,000 decisions that are fully indexed on every attribute of the case. It contains the entire text of the Income Tax Act 1961, incorporating all the amendments from 1962 till date.

TAEXPERT runs on Microsoft Windows environment and offers an extremely easy and attractive alternative to searching thru 1,30,000 pages of printed matter. Lawyers who specialize in direct taxes, tax consultants and corporate are the buyers.

Free CD-ROMs From PC Quest

PC Quest, a computer maganize, has bundled a free CD-ROM software that includes OS/2 wrap (IBM's graphical operating system), PC DOS 7 (latest release of DOS for the PC), Lotus Notes (a groupware package) and Vitual engineer (An Indian engineering design package) worth Rs. 45,000. The CD-ROM also has a graphical PC Quest database of 1600 products and NASSCOM's review of the software industry.

Kirloskar Multimedia to Produce CD-ROM Titles

Kirloskar Multimedia Limited jointly with Double Impact Multimedia, USA, is to produce high quality multimedia CD-ROM titles. Over the next twelve months, a minimum of nine titles are expected to be published. The titles were likely to be focused on entertainment products and will work on both Windows and Macintosh platforms. Kirloskar Multimedia will design, develop and produce the products while Double Impact will provide marketing, sales and distribution support. At present it is marketing three titles: Yoga for All, Goa the Pearl of Asia and Taj Mahal, for world market.

Lotus Software on CD-ROMs

Padmini Polymers Limited, New Delhi for the first time released the software on CD-ROM in Indian market in September 1995. The software was Lotus Smart Suit, comprises a pack of five individual softwares including Lotus 123 spreadsheet, Lotus Amo Pro, Lotus Approach, Lotus Freelance Graphics and Lotus Organizer. The end user price would be Rs. 19,000 with a free Sony CD drive.

Padmini Polymers was appointed as an exclusive original equipment manufacturer and distributor by Lotus Development Corporation of UK, for their Lotus Smart Suit on CD-ROMs with a free Sony CD-ROM drive in India, Nepal and Sri Lanka. The company has plans to produce CD-ROM, CD-Audio, CD-Video and CD-Interactive.

Interactive CDs Added to Palace on Wheels

An interactive multimedia hardware CD, with information on seven packaged themes on Rajasthan are among the four new features added to the newly developed Palace on Wheels, which started commercial run from September 20, 1995. This was developed as an equal joint venture operation between the Indian Railways and the Rajasthan Government.

The multimedia CD, which includes information on themes like forts and palaces, fairs, heritage, art and crafts, various food items available in the state, etc., would be distributed to tourist agents in India and abroad and would subsequently be made available on the Internet.

Pixel to Explore New Vistas

Pixel Multimedia, a computer firm incorporated in 1991, has plans to widen its gamut of activities from multimedia to providing training on multimedia and also executing offshore projects. The media service would include multimedia presentations, graphic design, audio visual presentation, and image grabbing and digital photo editing. In the software division, Pixel plans to prepare software packages for school and college students as well as for those preparing for joint entrance examination (JEE) for admission to IITs.

The firm recently launched Santa Claus' Diwali gift for children. It is a compact disc with cartoon stories from the Panchatantra. The product is only for the export market. Pixel would directly market the CDs in seven countries including Australia, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and Singapore. It had already received firm orders for about one lakh CDs.

Buddhist Text being Revived

The precious heritage of Dhamma Vachna—the words of Dhamma or teachings of Lord Buddha—was lost about 20 centuries ago when Buddhism spread from the land of its origin to other parts of Asia. Scholars engaged in publishing the entire Pali canon and allied commentarial literature are seeking the help of new computer technology, under a project of the Vipassana Research Institute (VRI) at Igatpuri in Maharashtra.

Pali literature has been transcribed into Devnagari from Burmese script and entered into the computer and converted the script into CD-ROM so that the invaluable words of the great master in authentic original form are preserved for future generations.

The VRI has also developed a computer software program capability to easily render the Devnagri script Pali texts into Burmese script. According to Ramesh Thanvi, a scholar who is assisting in designing the printed volumes for publication, conversions from various other scripts including Sinhalese, Roman and Thai are also being developed on the computer system that enables the entire document to be cross-referenced with Roman edition of the Pali Text Society, London. The VRI has decided to publish the Tipitaka and their comementarial literature simultaneously.

Scholars from Myanmar and other parts of the world are making efforts in the computer entry and final proof reading to see that the authentic literature of the "Chatta-Sangayana" published is error-free. About 100 other volumes including well-known works as `Visuddhimagga', `Abhidhammathasangha', `Namarupapariccheda', `Mahavamsa', `Sasanavamsa', and `Gandhavamsa' would also be published in Devnagari script. Of these many are available only in the Burmese script and quite a few are in manuscript form on palm leaves.

Multimedia Compact Disc on Heart & ECG

The Electronic Research and Development (ER&DC) has released a multimedia compact disc containg a trilingual multimedia program on Heart and ECG. The first disc was formally released at Thiruvanathapuram,onNovember22,1995.

SW Info Online

The 1995-96 edition of the Indian Software Directory, brought out by the National Association of Software and Services Companies (NASSCOM), has come out. Apart from the usual hard copy, a multimedia CD-ROM version of the directory is also likely to be released by April 1996. It is also available on the World Wide Web (WWW) on Internet. From January 1996, users from other Internet sites in the US and Singapore will be able to access it as well.

Hi-tech Magazine

Business India will also be available on CD-ROM now. The inaugural product contains a collection of all issues from January to September 1995. Business India on CD-ROM combines the multimedia capabilities of the CD-ROM format that includes full motion video, audio, text and graphics, with the database analysis capabilities of modern desktop computers, to enable users to rapidly locate and access information.

TUL's Software Set to Storm CD-ROM Market

Tata Unisys Ltd (TUL)'s CD-Gen software makes it possible to record data into this sleek-looking circular polycarbonated disc from a personal computer. TUL's software, the only one of its kind by an Indian company, enables the user to transfer both animation and sound effects, from a PC onto a CD master disc. This master disc can then be used for making copies.

According to TUL, CD-Gen offers facilities like recording master data and audio on CD recordables, user-friendly GUI, multi-volume and multi-session support and unique utilities to stimulate image as a CD-ROM file systems. The product runs on personal computers (Windows 3.1) and SUN workstations (Solaris 2.3). The company is currently working on a Windows 95 version.

Dharma Computers

Has tied up with US $ 60 million Pinnacle Micro to market the later's products in India. Dharma will distribute the US firm's entire range of rewritable optical disk drives and recordable CD-ROMs in India.

Other CD Products

Future of Optical Technology

Drives are Getting More Efficient

There is nothing one can do about this, except to buy the latest drives when the budget available. Many of the second generation drives produced five years ago are still commonplace in libraries and are continuing to give good service.

Data is Being Copied onto Hard Disk

Started in 1992, it is technically possible to copy data onto a (large) hard disk and to use the same software to interrogate the data kept on hard disk as you would for CD-ROM. This will provide you with several advantages. It will be much quicker to search the data, and as a result, you can have a much greater number of people searching the data simultaneously.

Early versions of software allowed you to perform simple Boolean searches and perhaps to download and print the information in a very basic form. As Windows applications have increased in popularity, more publishers are producing Windows versions of their software.

The Rise of the Internet

More and more people are discovering the commercial value of the Internet. Silver Platter for example already offers customers the option of searching databases across the Internet using the same Windows interface that is used to access a locally held Silver Platter title. This is bound to increase in the future, and to offer users a much wider range of databases.

Common User interfaces

One of the biggest problems that users have always faced when searching databases held on CD-ROM is that each publisher generally also produces their own interface, and you are unable to search one of their databases with someone else's retrieval software. This raises the daunting prospect of learning perhaps a dozen different interfaces to do the same job; i.e. locate and retrieve. Publishers have realized the problem of proprietary interface and are moving intoa position where, with the addition of a `Sandwich' of common programming between the interface and the search engine (the part of the program that actually does the searching of the disc) you will be able to choose one interface, and use that with all your databases. This is going to make your life, and the lives of your users much easier in the future.

The Electronic Reference or The Virtual Library

All of the above trends can really be summarized in the phase `The Electronic Reference Library'. In a short period of time, the users will be able to access data from a wide variety of sources from a database held in a local drive, from a networked CD-ROM drive, across databases provided on CD-ROM but held on hard disk, and via the Internet. They will be able to do all of this using a single retrieval interface.


CD-ROM is the most exciting medium going for both reference and interactive multimedia software. The titles available today are just the tip of the iceberg compared to what's coming, Although CD-ROM technology is a decade old, it is just now beginning to show its full potential.

The latest developments in the CD-ROM technology have changed the role of library and information science professionals. Multimedia is invading the education, entertainment and recreation. More and more users will automatically get trained in handling computerized information systems. The developing country like India could adopt this technology as it is free from telecommunication problems. There is a vast scope for publishing our own CD-ROM databases to suit not only our requirements but to earn foreign exchange.


Annexure I

General Statistics on CD-ROM Technology (June 1995)

No. of Databases (including multimedia) 9551

Databases available for Networking 2590

CD-ROM Publishers 1900

CD-ROM publishing Countries 390

Database Providers (Creators) 2445

Types of Databases 33

CD-ROM Database Languages 49

Database Subject Categories 270

Types of Computers Required 17

Types of Operating Systems Required 14

Types of Drives 15

Retrieval Software 566

Companies in CD-ROM Business 5734

Number of Hardware Manufacturers 93

Hardware Device Types 76

Software Producers 536

Journals covering Literature on CD-Technology 127 (Eng 102) (ISSN-56)

Books on CD-Technology 194 (Eng 187)

Conference Titles 1993+ 200

1994 104

1995 151

1996 8


Annexure II

CD-Databases by Subject Coverage

Subjects Database Nos.

Aerospace/Aircraft/Aviation Industry/Space 181

Arts & Humanities 129

Biology 112

Books & Serials 102

Business Information.Company INFN/Credit INFN/ 960

Import & Export INFN/Market Res/Marketing/

Product INFN

Census Data 101

Cemicals & Chemistry 121

Children's Books & Stories 351


Judicial/Legislation 935

Clip Art 240

Computer Industry/Languages/Manuals/

Programs/SW/Networking 880

Culture 200

Desktop Publishing 174

Dictionaries 186

Drug Information 100

Earth Sciences 121

Education/Education Aids/Learning/Training 1146

Enclopedias 154

Environment 180

Films & Movies 271

Finance 107

Fine Art & Antiques 122

Games 1043

General Interest/Leisure/Entertainment/Recreation 1235

Geography 136

Government Documents 113

Subjects Database Nos.

Government Information 214

Graphic Arts 205

Health 231

History 625

Language Learning Discs 304

Library Catalogues 133

Linguistics 102

Literacy 117

Literature 232

Map Data 161

Maps & Atlases 240

Medical Specialities 132

Medicine & Biomedicine 215

Multimedia 138

SiC 135

Utical Charts 100

News Information 210

Photo Libraries 760

Photography 669

Religion 102

Science & Technology 185

Shareware 348

Social Science 107

Sound Effects 101

Sport 110

Tourism 192

Transport 100

Travel 235

Video 134


Annexure III

CD Databases by Publishing Countries

Country DB Nos. Share %

USA 4766 49.90

UK 1534 16.06

Germany 1170 12.25

Canada 649 6.79

France 333 3.48

Italy 293 3.06

Japan 224 2.34

Netherland 172 1.80

Spain 113 1.18

Australia 95 0.99

Belgium 87 0.91

Mexico 82 0.85

Austria 47 0.49

Switzerland 47 0.49

Russia 37 0.38

Israel 30 0.31

Sweden 27 0.28

Thailand 25 0.26

Argentina 18 0.18

Denmark 16 0.16

Taiwan 12 0.12

Finland 11 0.11

Country DB Nos. Share %

Pakistan 9 0.09

Czech Repub 7 0.07

Hongkong 6 0.06

Luxembourg 6 0.06

Norway 6 0.06

Bulgaria 5 0.05

China 5 0.05

Hungary 5 0.05

Singapore 5 0.05

Brazil 4 0.04

W. Indies 4 0.04

Greece 4 0.04

Portugal 4 0.04

Zimbabwe 4 0.04

Ireland 3 0.03

S. Arabia 3 0.03

N. Zealand 2 0.02

Chile 1 0.01

Nicaragua 1 0.01

P. Rico 1 0.01

Rep. Singap 1 0.01


Annexure IV

CD Databases by Producers

Database Producer No. of Databases

Silver Platter 181

Philips Media Electronic Publishing Media of America 100

Laser Plot INC 97

US Patent & Trade Mark Office 11

National INS of Standards & Technology 8

European Patent Office 8

John Wiley & Son 10

Dialog 65

Quanta Press INC 41

Wayzata Tech INC 61

Discs Knowledge RES INC 33

Janes INF Group 47

UMI 37

Voyager Co 48

Database Producer No. of Databases

Compact Disk Interactive 2

CD Plus INC 33


INF Access Co 29

Bowker Electronic Pub 25


Information Handling Services 24

New Bank 57

Act Multimedia 1

Apple Computer 10

Canadian Centre for Occupation Health 11

CD-ROM Verlag 17

Chadwyk 56

Elsevier 21

Bowker Sons 11


Annexure V

Language Wise CD Databases

Language Database Nos. Share %

English 6638 69.50

German 1279 13.39

French 729 7.63

Spanish 582 6.09

Italian 434 4.54

Japanese 275 2.87

Dutch 170 1.77

Swedish 42 0.43

Portuguese 41 0.42

Danish 30 0.31

Chinese 36 0.37

Language Database Nos. Share %

Norwegian 17 0.17

Latin 20 0.20

Finnish 16 0.16

Russian 14 0.14

Hungarian 14 0.14

Greek 19 0.19

Czech 11 0.11

Hebrew 17 0.17

African 13 0.13

Multilingual 16 0.16

Others 51 0.53


Annexure VI

Various Makes of CD Drives

Drive Model Database Nos. Share %

ISO 9660 7211 75.05

Apple Macintosh 2943 30.81

CD-I 523 5.47

Electronic Book Player 195 2.04

DC TV 69 0.72

FM Towns 65 0.68

CD-ROM XA 78 0.81

Drive Model Database Nos. Share %

3DO 75 0.78

MMCD 41 0.42

Photo CD 49 0.51

VIS 16 0.16

CD 32 44 0.46

SEGA CD 26 0.27

Others 217 2.27


Annexure VII

CD Drives Access Time (in ms) (Varies from 42 ms to 1500 ms)


Access Time No. of Drives

42 3

120 2

140-170 13

180-195 15

200 14

210-240 18

250 10

260-295 7

Access Time No. of Drives

300 13

320 24

325 3

350 3

360-400 9

410-500 9

550-800 9

>1000 5


Annexure VIII

Select List of Manufacturers of CD Drives

Company No of CD-Drive Models

ACS Computer PTE Ltd. 6

Adaptec INC 26

Alea Systems INC 9

Apple Computers INC 3

Aztech New Media Corp 7

Creative Labs 21

Eastmen Kodak Co 7

Goldstar Uk Sales Ltd. 6

Incom Information und Computer GMBH 7

Meridian Data INC 9

Company No of CD-Drive Models

Microboards INC 9

Optology Ltd. 6

Panasonic Europe 13

Philips Interactive Media Systems 15

Plextor 7

Procomm Tech INC 11

Scenario INC 8

Sony Corp 13

Toshiba Europe 6


Annexure IX

Companies with Different Activities

Companies Nos.

Associations/User Groups 118

Compression Services 93

Conference Organizers 257

Consultancy 1113

Data Preparation 446

Developer 2548

Hardware Producer 402

Companies Nos.

Hardware Distributor 591

Mastering & Replication 357

Software Distributor 1917

Software Producers 1068

Standards 5

Training 547


Annexure X

Availability of CD-ROM Databases in India

ABI/Inform 10

About Cows 1

Academic Index 5

Adonis 5

Aerospace Database 4

Agricola 10

Aidsline 25

Analytical Absts 2

Appled Science 7

Technical Index 3



Biotechnology ABSTS 10

Books in Print 5

Business Periodical Index 3


Cancer CD 5

Cancerlit 5

CAS (12th CI) 1

Chembank 3

Chemistry Citation Index 1

Compendex Plus 25

Cross Culture CD 3

Directory of US Importers/Exporters 2

Discovery 2

Disssertation ABST. INTL 5

Drug. INF. Full Text 2

Econlit 5

EM: Drug & Pharmacology 4

EM: Neurosciences 2

Energy Environline ABST 1

Eric 15

Food & Analyst 1

Food & Human Nutrition 2



Global Defence Information 1

IIM Database Plus 1


International Drug Library 1


Intelligent Technologies 1

International Pharm. ABST 5


Kirk Othmer 10

Lisa 3

Medline 65

Metade Collection 10

Mathsci Disc 10


OCLC Environment Library 1

Polymer Encyclopaedia 5

Polytox-D (Embase) 1

Popline 5

Psyclit 5


Social SCI. Index 2

Sociofile 5

Toxline 3

Ulrich's Plus 8

US military Standards (DODISS) 3

VetCD 1

Water Resource ABST 1

Whitakers Book Bank 1

Wilson Business ABST 2