Let's say we're in a computer room of an university. In order to use a computer, you have to write your name, department, and seat number in a notepad.

What do you call that notepad? Or what adjective should you use to describe it?


4 Answers 4


It's a log book or simply, log.

A log book is a book in which someone records details and events relating to something, for example a journey or period of their life, or a vehicle.

In corporate buildings, I always see log books near the security area/concierge so they can record the names of the visitors who come in and out of the building, and the time they went in and out as well, for security purposes.

This may be used in other similar situations where tracking of activities is important. i.e., in your question, the usage of computers in a university computer room.

  • 2
    I think this is the right answer (+1). It's worth noting that the definitions in several dictionaries I looked at, and even in Wikipedia, specifically referred to ships and vehicles, but the term is definitely not specific to those cases. It can refer to any important record of events, and it definitely fits here, even if you don't get that impression from a particular dictionary entry.
    – TypeIA
    Commented Jun 26, 2019 at 13:47
  • You will also see Visitors' book for those in companies, museums, hotels. It's not usual (but perfectly intelligible) to call them just "the log", but it is common to call them simply "the book". I do hear "the log" for a maintenance log book for industrial equipment.
    – jonathanjo
    Commented Jun 26, 2019 at 15:08
  • @jonathanjo I've heard "visitors log" for that scenario.
    – Stobor
    Commented Jun 27, 2019 at 6:52
  • 1
    This is a good term for it and at the same time it's not at all used in conversation where I come from (mid-Atlantic US). At a University computer lab, or an office building security desk, or at a secure facility (where all visits must be logged), people just call it a sign-in sheet. At weddings or BnBs, or any place "fancy", it might be called a guest register. I think only on a sailing vessel would I expect there to be a log book, in the parlance of where I'm from. Commented Jun 27, 2019 at 13:37
  • 1
    @ToddWilcox It's not just vessels. Every engineer will keep a log of what they do day by day. And there's also web based logs, and video logs, which are all the rage with kids today, shortened to 'blog' and 'vlog'. Commented Jun 27, 2019 at 14:00

A register or guest register. 'an official list or record'


At my university, "sign in sheet". If you search for "sign in sheet" you can find many examples of similar sheets for various situations.

  • While the accepted answer is certainly a good word, for OP's specific use ("In order to use a computer, you have to write your name, department, and seat number in a notepad."), I think this Answer is a more specific and applicable term.
    – BruceWayne
    Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 4:10

It's British english really I think, but there's also 'jotter'

  • 3
    A jotter is really a small note book, typically used in a classroom to take notes, or used for homework exercises. I've never heard it used as the term for a log or sign-in sheet. Commented Jun 28, 2019 at 13:06

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