By: Chloe Martin
This month, the U.S. Government Publishing Office introduced the world to govinfo, a beta website that will eventually replace the Federal Digital System (FDsys) as the go-to resource for federal primary law from all three branches of government. Read our Q&A to learn more.
How does govinfo differ from FDsys?
The content available for access will not change, but govinfo offers some new and improved features:
- New ways to browse content (alphabetically and by category);
- Responsive design for better display on mobile devices;
- More choices for sharing pages and content on social media;
- Enhanced search filters; and
- The brand new “related documents” feature which will display other documents within govinfo that relate to or reference a particular document.
Who can access govinfo?
Everyone. Govinfo, like FDsys, is available to the public.
What major resources are available to search and browse on govinfo?
- The Federal Register
- The Code of Federal Regulations
- The Federal Budget
- The U.S. Code
- Congressional Bills
- Statutes at Large
- The Congressional Record
- Congressional Calendars, Hearings, and Reports
- U.S. Court Opinions, including SCOTUS decisions
How can I access govinfo?
The GPO is requesting public feedback on its new site; visit this survey to tell the GPO what you think!
Because of continuing construction in the library as well as the move of the College of Law servers this weekend, the Law Library will have temporarily shortened hours.
The library will be open:
Thursday, June 25, 2015 7am-6pm
Friday, June 26, 2015 8am-4pm
Saturday-Sunday, June 27-28, 2015 10am-6pm
Monday-Thursday, June 28-July 2, 2015 8am-6pm
Friday-Saturday, July 3-4, 2015 Closed
Sunday, July 5, 2015 10am-6pm
Because of the server move, all Law Library databases will be unavailable from 4pm on Friday, June 26, 2015 through Sunday, June 28, 2015.
As a reminder, only current College of Law students are allowed in the building to use study aids, reserves, or get research assistance. Students will need to show their ID and sign in at the Security Desk and proceed immediately to the Circulation Desk on the Fifth Floor. Library personnel will retrieve materials, as available, and direct students to an area of the library where they can study. Students needing research assistance can also use the red Chat Reference button in the upper left corner of the Law Library’s home page.
At this time, the computer lab, printers, copiers and scanners are not available. We will continue to update you as construction progresses and more resources become available. In the meantime, enjoy a sneak peek (above) at the view from the 5th floor terrace. If you have any questions please contact Associate Dean Niedringhaus at firstname.lastname@example.org or 404-413-9140.
We’re a little over 1 month into the Supreme Court’s 2010 term, and there have already been some interesting arguments touching on, among other things, the sale of video games to minors and the Westboro Baptist Church. You can follow the developments at the Court on the news, but there are also some great websites that track what’s going on, from grant of certiorari to decision.
SCOTUSblog, one of the best sources for Court news, keeps track of the most interesting recent petitions for certiorari and recently granted petitions. To prepare for oral argument, you can check the Legal Information Institute’s oral argument previews, and SCOTUSblog’s collection of briefs and other case documents. And, of course, after the argument you can check out the audio on the Supreme Court’s website and at the Oyez Project; starting with the 2010 term, transcripts and audio will be posted on Friday of every argument week. When the opinion is finally handed down, you can follow the happenings live at SCOTUSblog, get the syllabus sent automatically to your email account from the LII, see a visual representation of the votes from Oyez, and download the full slip opinion from the Supreme Court.
If that’s not enough, you can play some Oyez Baseball and find out where your favorite former Justice is buried. Or you could use all of this information to dominate your own FantasySCOTUS league!
Ballotpedia is one of the more fascinating sites that you’ve probably never heard of. It’s a freely editable wiki, like Wikipedia, but much, much more specialized. With a couple of clicks, you can find out what measures are currently on the ballot across the country, details on all of the state legislative elections, and all sorts of information on what’s going on with the Georgia elections.
Ballotpedia also has a lot of historical information. Want to see what measures were on the Georgia ballot in 2004? Or 2000? You can find them there. In many cases you can even find a link to the full text of the measure or the official election results. And, of course, Ballotpedia will be updating the site tomorrow with all of the latest results.
If you’ve been using www.gpoaccess.gov to access federal government documents, prepare yourselves for a long-awaited arrival: the Federal Digital System, found at www.fdsys.gov! The Government Printing Office has announced that, at the end of 2010, FDsys will be the GPO’s electronic system of record for government publications.
From now through the end of 2010, the sites will operate concurrently, but in 2011 you’ll have to use FDsys to retrieve the United States Code, Code of Federal Regulations, presidential documents, the Federal Register, the United States Government Manual, and many other useful government resources. The COL Library encourages you to take the time to explore the FDsys site and how it functions. There are helpful tutorials available, demonstrating how you can search or browse using the site. Because the site is currently in public beta, the GPO is seeking public feedback. Now is the time to share your thoughts about the new site!
An exciting feature of FDsys is the number of authenticated government documents. The GPO takes a number of steps to assure that many of the electronic government documents are unaltered from their original publication. The authenticated documents available on FDsys have visible digital signatures. A verified, authentic document will contain a Seal of Authenticity. The seal is a graphic of an eagle and the words “Authenticated U.S. Government Information.” Visit www.fdsys.gov and click on a recent piece of popular legislation–like the Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform and Consumer Protection Act–to see the digital signature.