Library of Congress Magazine (LCM), Vol. 1 No. 2: November-December 2012 Page: 5
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CONGRESS.GOV: FREE, MOBILE, SEARCHABLE
THE LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, in collaboration with
the U.S. Senate, House of Representatives and
the Government Printing Office recently unveiled
Congress.gov, a new public beta site for accessing free,
fact-based legislative information. The site eventually
will replace the public THOMAS system and the
congressional Legislative Information System (LIS).
THOMAS, named for Jefferson, was launched by the
Library in 1995 as a bipartisan initiative of Congress.
The system has been updated over the years, but its
foundation can no longer support the capabilities that
today's Internet users have come to expect, including
access on mobile devices.
"the new, more robust platform reaffirms for the
21st century Congress's vision of a vital legislative
information resource for all Americans," said Librarian
of Congress James H. Billington at an event at the
Sen. Charles E. Schumer (D-N.Y.), chairman of
the Senate Rules and Administration Committee
and the Joint Committee on the Library, said, "the
Congress.gov website heralds a new era in presenting
congressional information online, with tools and
infrastructure unimaginable 17 years ago."
for you ATTHE LIBRARY
TOURS OF THE THOMAS JEFFERSON BUILDING
WIA1: Public tours of the Thomas
WHERE: Thomas Jefferson Building, 10
First Street S.E., Washington, D.C.
Ground Floor Information Desk.
WHERE: Monday - Saturday (see visitors
site for schedule)
COST: FREE, reservations are not
required for groups of fewer than 10
NEARLY 2 MILLION visitors ann
visit the Library's historic lhor
Jefferson Building in Washingt
D.C. lhey can view current exh
and take a tour of the building.
one-hour walking tours of the i
are led by volunteer docents wh
the story of the Library of Con
history, art and architecture, col
and services for Congress and t
nation. lhe Library's buildings
fully accessible. A limited num:
wheelchairs are available.
I N T R D U C I N G BETA
i U R!ARY,OF
CONG RESS GOV
Rep. Dan Lungren (R-Calif.), chairman of the Committee
on House Administration, said, "Congress.gov will enhance
transparency, increase savings for the Library, and provide
Congress and the nation the vital legislative information we need
to deliberate about our collective public policies."
Using best practices for retrieving and displaying information,
the refined, user-friendly system also will make finding and
using legislative information more intuitive, comprehensive and
accessible than the existing system. Congress.gov includes bill
status and summary, bill text and member profiles
and new features such as effective display on
mobile devices; ability to narrow and refine search
results; ability to simultaneously search all content
across all available years, with some files dating
from the 93rd congress; easier identification
Lually of current bill status; and Members' legislative
nas history and biographical profiles. Many existing
on, features have been maintained, such as links to
hibitions video of the House and Senate floor, top searched
Free bills and the save/share feature.
building Other data, such as the Congressional Record,
committee reports, nominations, treaties and
gress, its communications, will be incorporated over time
lections in a planned, prioritized order. The Library
he anticipates Congress.gov will operate as a beta
are site for approximately one year as this work is
er of completed. During that time, both THOMAS
and LIS will continue to operate as usual.
O MORE INFORMATION:
November/December 2012 www.loc.gov/lcm
S Visitor Services Office www.loc.gov/visit/
Arranging group tours www. loc.gov/visit/tours/groups/request. php
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Office of Communications, Library of Congress. Library of Congress Magazine (LCM), Vol. 1 No. 2: November-December 2012, periodical, November 2012; Washington, D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc133017/m1/7/: accessed February 20, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .