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NARA offers Google-like search tool.

It doesn't have a snappy name, but the National Archives and Records Administrations" (NARA) new online search system, Online Public Access, aims to make finding federal records as easy as a Google search.

Available at www.archives.gov/ research/search, the new online search system consolidates access to 20 million federal archival records, officials said. With the Online Public Access tool, users can search multiple NARA resources at once to find what they need, so it's no longer necessary to perform separate searches via resources like the Archival Research Catalog (ARC) for catalog descriptions, histories, and biographies; Access to Archival Databases (AAD) for electronic records; and Archives.gov.

According to NARA, the prototype currently contains all the data from ARC and seven series from AAD containing 10.9 million permanent e-records. In addition, the prototype provides access to 1 million electronic records currently in the Electronic Records Archives, which are not available elsewhere online.

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There are a few shortcomings, however. For example, in many cases a search will retrieve only catalog references to a historic document because many historic archives documents have not yet been digitized.

Additional data will be added to the new search soon, including access to presidential library material and the 1940 census. NARA also plans to add additional functionality this year, including an image-zooming feature that will enable users to zoom and pan the Archives' online holdings and social sharing through Facebook, Twitter, and other sites.

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Title Annotation:GOVERNMENT RECORDS; www.archives.gov/ research/search; National Archives and Records Administration
Publication:Information Management Journal
Article Type:Brief article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Mar 1, 2011
Words:242
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