This week, the Government Printing Office (GPO) announced the release of the Federal Digital System (FDsys) as a public beta. FDsys allows GPO to manage information from all three branches of the government and offer a “one-stop site to authentic, published government information.” FDsys is scheduled to replace GPO Access in mid-2009.
This first launch includes the Congressional Record, Congressional Hearings, and publications of the Office of the Federal Register. Of particular interest may be the Office of the Federal Register’s (OFR) Daily Compilation of Presidential Documents, which contains orders, statements, and remarks from the White House Press Office. The Daily Compilation replaces the weekly printed compilation previously available.
FDsys is designed to ease searchability. Documents are converted one-by-one to XML, which allows the use of better search technology and mode advanced search functions. According to Mike Wash, GPO’s Chief Information Officer, all of the collections in GPO Access will be converted to XML by mid-year.
AALL has consistently offered support to GPO in its development of FDsys. Last year, Mary Alice Baish testified before the House Committee on Appropriations’ Subcommittee on the Legislative Branch in support of the FY 2009 Appropriations Request of the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO), including a $21.2 million request for FDsys. In addition, many AALL members participated in small focus groups with the FDsys team at the 2008 AALL Annual Meeting in Portland and in Washington, D.C. to offer feedback. We’re pleased that the FDsys developers implemented many of our suggestions, including the ability to search by citation.
While FDsys is in beta, we encourage you to take this opportunity to explore the new site. You’re invited to submit your comments to email@example.com.
[Posted by Emily Feldman]