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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SPECIAL NOTE: Remember how we did a tour of the fifty states — it must have been over a year ago! Next week we start another multi-part tour, only this time we’re touring state capitals! It all starts next week.
EPA Invites Feedback on ECHO Site
The Environmental Protection Agency is inviting the public to visit its recently unveiled Enforcement and Compliance History Online, or ECHO, Web site at
http://www.epa.gov/echo/. The EPA will be accepting comments on the site until the middle of next month.
From the front page of ECHO you can search for facilities in your area and discover whether the facilities were inspected and whether violations were detected and enforcement actions were taken. You can search from the front page by zip code and city and state. There’s also an advanced search that
allows you to search by facility name, SIC code, region, current status, and demographic profile. You can also specify that minor facilities be included in search results (by default only major facilities are included in search results.)
Searching for facilities in 90210 found one result. Search results come in a table showing the name and address of the facility, and four yes/no items: whether the site’s been inspected in the last two years, whether there were
violations, where there are significant current violations, and whether there have been enforcement actions in the last two years.
Click on the name of the facility for a detailed report. Report data includes Facility Permits and Identifiers, Facility Characteristics, Inspection History, Compliance Summary Data, and a detailed demographic profile of the
surrounding area (population, race and age breakdown, number of households in area, etc.) Not all facilities have information for all categories. Each category of information has a data dictionary link in case you need some help interpreting what you’re seeing.
Ireland Government Website
All you ever wanted to know about Irish government is available from its portal at http://www.irlgov.ie/. The index on the left links to State Organisations and
Government Departments. Both are listed with e-mail address and links to the organisation or department Web page. The agency’s page includes an introduction and news releases with most recently answered Parliamentary questions and additional links like the ones for upcoming Cultural Events.
The next listing on the index is Sites by Topic which has an alphabetical listing of topics listed with links to additional information. The Law link leads us to the Office of the Attorney General and Courts Service, which lists Court Offices and an extensive list of Legal Professionals.
The Find Information Section of the Index has separate listings for Citizen Information and Business Information. Citizen Info is sorted by categories such as Education, Employment, Environment along with Sports and Leisure. The Business Information page has a Business Life Cycle Index on the left of
the page to guide the reader from starting a business to closing or selling it.
This site search option offers a quick search by keyword which opens to a form which boxes to check to target your query. Search results are listed by relevance and include an option to retrieve similar links. Almost overlooked is an “About Ireland” link hidden beneath the search box. It links to details about
the people and culture.
Factiva Adds Reuters Health
Factiva, whose parent company is Dow Jones and Reuters, has announced adding Reuters Health to its medical and healthcare subscription services. Reuters Health features an advanced indexing system with more than 150,000 terms for customized searching. Check out more information in the press release at http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/021203/32159_1.html.
California Expands e-Filing Program
California has expanded its e-filing program to include state income tax forms 540 and 540A, which can be filed through the state’s Franchise Tax Board site at www.ftb.ca.gov. Taxpayers using the shortest form, 540 2EZ, already have option of filing online. This is a free service. Check out the press release at
Dialog Announces Web Domain Names Database
Thomson company, Dialog, has announced the creation of an online database of Internet domain names. File 225 is Dialog’s largest file with over 65 million records, searchable by name, affiliation, location, telephone number and IP address. Dialog plans to offer users an Alert service for the database. (If anyone knows of an alert service to replace to domain monitoring services
offered by Company Sleuth fifty million years ago, could you please pass them on? Thanks.) You can get more information about the new database:
“Oil and Gas on the Internet” Updated
Competitive Analysis Technologies has released the 21st quarterly revisions of “Oil and Gas on the Internet.” More than 7 thousand profiles are includes in the Upstream and Downstream databases. Resources are sorted into 16 categories including producers, suppliers and regulators. There are additional categories for resources on the “hidden web” and “white papers.” The databases, aka CATSites, are available from the CATSites Portal at
http://184.108.40.206/login/. Additional formats include hard copy, CD-ROM or Intranet content. The press release is at http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/021203/32236_1.html.
Yahoo Offers A Year In Review
Yahoo has announced the launch of Yahoo! Year In Review at
http://yir.yahoo.com/. This site brings information from several Yahoo properties together into one overview of 2002.
From the front page you’ll see links to several different categories, including news, sports, television, and — astrology? What, the most popular astrological signs for 2002? Back to that one in a minute.
The materials for each part of the site vary. I really liked the news section, with several overviews of the top stories of the year (obituaries, the elections, the anniversary of 9/11, and so on), and the finance section was neat, with the
interactive features on Enron and Martha Stewart, and the top stocks of the year. But there wasn’t much that captured my interest in the games section, and I was hoping for kid- oriented news in the Yahooligans section, but what I got was information on the top news, top games, etc. The astrology
materials featured a look back at 2002 and an overview for 2003 for the Chinese zodiac, numerology, and the “regular” zodiac (you know, the one with “Derry and Toms” and “Basil.”)