LLRXBuzz - June 26, 2000

The Latest on Legal Research

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US Gov't to Create Big Web Site

Don't get me wrong; I'm thrilled the US Government is getting more electronic. But the headline from Reuters -- "US Government to Create Big Web Site, Clinton Says," just hit my funnybone. I can see him up there on the podium, holding his arms out: "We're going to make a big Web site, man. It's going to be like huge." Maybe Reuters could have come up with a better headline.

But anyway. The site will be called firstgov.gov and will be available within the next 90 days, Clinton said. Some of the things it will be useful for include tracking social security benefits, learning investment options, and checking for flight delays (?). The site will also allow users to search through all online government documents. The Reuters article about the new site is at http://www.mercurycenter.com/svtech/news/breaking/internet/docs/131216l.htm To keep up with this new initiative, the Council for Excellence in Government looks like a good place: http://www.excelgov.org/.

New Site For Understanding Medical Disability

AnswerMed.com (http://www.answermed.com/) is a free medical education site designed for employees to provide a better understanding of complex medical issues. The site provides straightforward descriptions of common illnesses, injuries, and medical procedures taking complex medical knowledge and summarizing it into easy-to-understand explanations. AnswerMed.com's content comes from Dr. Presley Reed's The Medical Disability Advisor. This resource is researched and published by the Reed Group, Ltd.

The Search function is really basic; enter in the name of a medical condition or surgery. From there you'll get a list of results in the middle of the page. Searching for "cancer," for example, got 204 results. Searching for "appendix" gets seven results.

Here's where it becomes a little tricky. Pick one of the results in the list and you're presented with the headline "What Is It?" and underneath that a large paragraph of information on the disease or the surgery. However, above that information is a navigation bar whose buttons are either grey or brownish. A grey button means the item is not available, but a brownish button means there's more information. For example, choosing acute appendicitis leads to a large paragraph of information about the condition. But clicking on "diagnosis" will lead to other how the condition is diagnosed. Different items have different bits of information available; some entries have illustrations, some don't, and of course procedures don't have diagnostic information.

New Web Portal For Professional Searchers                      
Information Today: June 19, 2000. The Dialog Corporation has announced The Info Pro Portal, a Web portal for professional searchers that provides customizable access to industry information and news to Dialog's products and services. The layout and interface are very similar to those offered on MyNetscape. They have three zones of information: general resources for information professionals, continuous updates about Dialog products and future development plans, and Dialog resources for information professionals. Dialog has other portals already available including Dialog Business, Dialog Science, Dialog Technology, and PowerPortal. http://www.infotoday.com/newsbreaks/nb000619-1.htm

Prospective MBA Students Have New  Resource                                  
Educational Directories Unlimited has a new web site, Business.Gradschools.com (http://business.gradschools.com). This is a sub-directory of Gradschools.com and enables students to focus their search on business graduate programs. You start your search by choosing a subject -- from accounting to Weekend MBA. For the sake of this exploration I'm going to choose Financial Engineering. Once you've chosen that you narrow down where you want to find a program -- either inside or outside the United States. (You may also be given a couple of related program topics to explore, in this case mathematics and finance.) 

Once you've chosen a location, you get a list of schools in almost- alphabetical order. "Almost" means that sponsored listings are at the top, with the rest of the listings coming after. Listing information includes school name, address, phone number, e-mail address (sometimes) description, degree offered, a link to a Peterson's description of the program (sometimes), and a direct link to the department (sometimes.)

Research Guides For Medical Related Litigation                               
Medifocus.com (http://www.medifocus.com) has released an expanded Internet-based library of advanced medical-legal research guides for attorneys involved in medical malpractice and personal injury litigation. Medifocus guides help attorneys identify the most relevant and important medical articles published about complex legal-medical issues.

Attorneys have access to over 250 individual research reports including 175 medical malpractice guides, 50 personal injury guides, and 50 expert directory guides. These guides are created by medical professionals and updated quarterly. There's a search box on the front page that allows you to search for a condition. Once a condition is searched for, you'll be presented with a list of guides available, if any, and their cost. The guides I found were all $9.95. If the search function isn't helping you there is a catalog you can browse.

New Site To Help Small Businesses                                                         
SCORE (http://www.score.org/) has launched a web site to assist the development of startup companies and small businesses. The new features include 10 content-rich resource sections, small business readiness tests for new entrepreneurs, weekly small business polls, an enhanced search feature, and fast links to local SCORE offices.

SCORE will continue its Get Email Counseling service under the new name, Online Counseling, and with expanded features allowing entrepreneurs to find the right advisor and get business answers more readily. Smalloffice.com will provide resources and information for the site. You can read the press release with more information at: http://biz.yahoo.com/bw/000621/dc_score.html.

New Online Source For Compensation Research                                                             
Salary.com has launched its web site (http://www.salary.com) to provide accurate, authoritative salary data online. The site includes features like Salary Wizard (a salary calculator), editorial content, and an in-depth salary databank covering a comprehensive list of industries and thousands of job titles.

The Salary Wizard is incredibly easy to use. Enter a job title and a location (either zip code or metro area). You can narrow down the job further, and then receive a report with information about the salary of that job is in your area. I was able to discover that someone writing LLRXBuzz weekly is supposed to make $40,000 a year. Well, no, I'm kidding. I was surprised to discover that Salary.com did have a comprehensive "Internet/New Media" category, so even if you work doing Internet things (which usually means you have a dog's breakfast of a job) you're likely to find something approximating your job in their listings.