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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Access For All
Access For All (http://www.ilr.cornell.edu/ped/accessforall/index.htm)
provides details on making work places more accessible for people with vision or hearing disabilities. The home page offers viewers the option of focusing on accommodations for vision disabilities, hearing disabilities, or if they would
rather have an overview. Their solutions can be tailored according to whether a company has less than or more than 100 people. The last check-box before the submit button ask if the viewer is a Human Resources professional.
The tools of this site are listed in the left hand column. The page on Hearing Loss discussed communicating with a person who has a hearing disability in person or via the phone. It also covers communicating in the work field and more formal situations such as meetings. Safety issues and audio alerts are included, as well as a feature on accommodating individuals with speech
The page discussing visual impairments also looks at options available for communicating by phone as well as computer features a visually impaired person might need. There are suggestions for increasing productivity and additional tools such as cassette recorders and voice-activated equipment. The pictures on both pages are of the people in case studies.
Other tools from the left column on the home page include the advantages of hiring a person with hearing or vision related disabilities and steps for employers implementing the American Disabilities Act. You’ll have to use the “Other Resources” page to get the actual technology suppliers — I didn’t see any of those on the Web site.
Public Record Finder is a portal to more than 7000 public record sites located at http://www.freeprf.com/. State-side, you can go straight to individual state sites, or a page of government sites. In addition to agencies listed by acronym, the government page also links to intelligence, law enforcement and defense agencies. There are also miscellaneous and related sites such as an Excluded Parties Index, National Climatic Data Center and the Government IT
The Worldwide sites page has links to Asia, Canadian and European sites as well as U. S. Territories and other world wide sites. And there is a page of Statistics Data Sites with links to the Salary Index Information and criminal and transportation sites.
If your search is more broad based, the lower portion of the page has columns of Free Public Record Sites and Free Public Reference Sites. Lots of info here. If you’re looking for international sites, though, it might be best to stick with
Search Systems (http://www.pac-info.com/); Public Record Finder has some international sites but seems to focus mostly on sites from the United States.
Directory of Legal Academia
Cornell’s Legal Information Institute has a directory of U.S. law schools online at http://www.law.cornell.edu/dla/. Schools are listed alphabetically by location (the University of Akron is listed under Akron). The name of the school links to
the University. Additional information includes the phone number, address and most records include links to university directories (faculty profiles, e-mail lookup, etc.)
This site also has a page of other legal directories which includes information of contacting individuals as well as legal organizations. The list of organizations includes the ABA, Law Publishers and Paralegal Associations. You might also want to check out the Law Information Institute at
http://www.law.cornell.edu/, with recent legal news and a link to the Code of Federal Regulations.
Canadian Copyrights Database
The Canadian Intellectual Property Office features a Copyrights Database at http://strategis.gc.ca/cipo/copyrights/jsp/search.jsp. The site’s search engine accepts up to three keywords within field options that include title, author, category and more with “and/or/but not” connector choices.
This site also links to pages for browsing information about Patents, Trade-Marks, Copyrights, Industrial Designs and Integrated Circuit Topographies. Categories on each page include E-Services, Publications, Legislation and Forms. The databases for searching patents and trade-marks operate like the Copyrights Database.
CensusScope (http://www.censusscope.org) presents it information in several different tabs: charts, maps, rankings, segregation, and about. The charts tabs include charts for population growth (from 1960-2000), population by race (1980, 1990, and 2000), and age distribution. Each chart is accompanied by an explanatory paragraph or so.
The cool thing about these charts is that you can zoom in on them. The initial charts are national. But a drop menu on the left lets you get other charts, either by state or selected metro area (be sure to check the metro area list
after you generate a state list — you’ll get a list of metro areas for that state.)
The maps tab allows you to select a state and get state- focused charts (population growth, population by race, etc.) Again, you can zoom in to metro areas or zoom out to a country view. The rankings tab allows you to select a
variable (population growth and percentage of multiracial population) and get a ranking either of states or counties within a chosen state. The segregation tab is not yet complete, but promises to soon “unveil a complete set racial segregation exposure and dissimilarity measures for 1246 individual US cities with populations exceeding 25,000 and all metro areas, based on single and multiple race populations as identified in Census 2000.”
CensusScope also plans to add poverty and education data soon, but there’s plenty to browse through now. Worth a look.
Stands4 In the Place Where You Live…
.. now face north. Stands4 (http://www.stands4.com/) is a searchable subject index of abbreviations.
There are several ways to get through this site. You can browse by topic (categories include governmental, computer, and medical), browse by first letter of abbreviation, and search.
Though at first glance there appear to be lots of subcategories, maybe there should be more — there are 520 listings in the “Occupations & Positions” business subcategory! Listings include the abbreviation, what it stands for, and any additional information. Click on the plus sign to the left of the entry to add the entry to your list. (Registration is not required for this feature; maybe
they’re using a cookie thing)
According to the statistics section of this site, there are over 94,000 entries here. Considering that I saw a category with over 9000 entries, you’re going to want to use the search engine. Fortunately it’s easy to use. Type in the abbreviation and away you go. Unfortunately it’s case- sensitive; ceo finds nothing but CEO finds 44 results (including “Certified Egoistic Organizer”, “Children’s Education Opportunity”, and “Chiropractic Elite Organization,” in addition to the more expected meanings.)
Rising From the Ashes – Ground Zero has finally been cleared. Now comes the hard part. What will be built there—and who will decide?