Tara Calishain is the co-author of Official Netscape Guide to Internet Research, 2nd Edition, and author or co-author of four other books. She is the owner of CopperSky Writing & Research.
In This Issue:
The Latest on Legal Research
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Pew Internet & American Life Project
The Pew Internet & American Life Project
(http://www.pewinternet.org/) is an initiative by the Pew Research Center to explore the Internet’s effect on American life through online and telephone surveys. Their mission is to become an authoritative source of the societal impact of the Web.
The site’s front page features the Project’s latest reports. The most recent one is on how citizens use the Web sites of government agencies and what happens as users gain experience online. The page also features News, a Query of the Moment, and an opportunity to receive their report bulletins.
You will find a keyword search box at the top of the page. Results list the chapter heading with the first couple lines and the title of the report in which it appears. At the bottom of the search results page is an Advanced Search
On the left side of the front page under Net Resources I spied a link to a Research Engine which has a drop-down menu of types of information sources, such as Research/Advocacy Orgs and Government sites. And don’t miss the “Internet Data Dump” page, which contains links to sites with Internet statistics.
RAPS is the Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society. Their focus is the health care arena, including pharmaceuticals, biologics, cosmetics and more. They invite you to their Website at http://www.raps.org/ with an acknowledgement that it is optimized for MSIE 5.5 or above. So if you’re using something different (like Opera 5.x), things might look a bit different.
RA Interactive is RAPS’ online magazine. The first issue looks at industry’s role in preparing for and responding to the threat of bio-terrorism. It also looks at the challenges the FDA is facing and how European countries are preparing for bio-terrorism.
News updates are listed in the left column, followed by press releases (a more complete set of news is available at http://www.raps.org/news/). The Product & Service Center has a bookstore and Regulatory Research Center. Check out
the Knowledge Center for information on upcoming conferences and a glossary of regulatory affairs vocabulary.
Independent Counsel Investigations
The U.S. House of Representatives sponsors a page of Independent Counsel Investigation reports on the Government Printing Office’s Website at
http://icreport.access.gpo.gov/index.html. Most of the reports are available in PDF format. Assuming you have Adobe Acrobat Reader, clicking on PDF brings up the title of contents with links to each section. This page also has
links to White House Responses and links to related documents.
Almanac of Policy Issues
Policy News Publishing features an Almanac of Policy Issues at
http://www.policyalmanac.org/. Headings include Criminal Justice, Government Operations, Social Welfare and more. Each heading has a section on Almanac issues, and is then broken down by directory sources, news, Congressional committees and national organizations.
The Almanac’s search engine includes Boolean options AND and OR. The results are single links with no explanation except section headings.
If you’re looking for on overview category, check out the General Reference link on the front page. It contains links both specific to policy issues and more general reference resources (like search engines.)
Big Big Big Bankruptcies
If you can’t get over your guilt about accidentally bouncing a $10 check one time, check out this page:
http://www.bankruptcydata.com/Research/15_Largest.htm lists the fifteen largest corporate bankruptcies since 1980, showing company name, date, total assets pre-bankruptcy, and filing court district. Click on the company name for any reports that BankruptcyData.com has for sale about that company.
Top Ten Court Website Awards
These are from last summer, but they’re still interesting. Justice Served has a top ten list (from summer 2001) of court sites at http://justiceserved.com/top10sites.cfm. Sites include title, URL, and minireview/description. Don’t miss the back issue in the “Top Ten Hall of Fame.”
Surveys From the Financial Times
The Financial Times publishes about 240 surveys a year and makes them available on their site — http://surveys.ft.com/. These are more like overview surveys and not surveys as in pages and pages of statistics and nothing else.
In the middle of this page you can link to available surveys in categories including industries, countries, and annual surveys. Content varies depending on the surveys. Sometimes they contain unsorted groups of articles, and sometimes articles are sorted by topics.
If the listing of the surveys on the front page aren’t enough for you, you can get a PDF of all surveys published since 1994, and the date they were published, at http://specials.ft.com/spdocs/FT34WOWY9ZC.pdf.
Another Undocumented Google Syntax — Date-Based Searching
(and API fun)
That wacky Google. Here they have date-based searching and they don’t even tell anybody about it! I’ve written an article about it and even a Perl script that uses the Google API to check on keyword popularity in the Google index over time. Get the article and the code at
Google Updates News Search
Google has updated their news search (http://news.google.com) slightly. First of all, the search results page for news search allows you to sort by date or
relevance (the link choices are on the far right.) If you choose sort by date, the most recent articles come up on top but you lose the “article groupings” you get with sort by relevance (Google News sorts by relevance as a default.)
Google has also added more sources to their news search engine than they had initially, though they would not tell me how many. They would also not say when they would be out of beta.