Thursday, April 30, 2009

Tracking swine flu activity

From the Government Documents department...

An excellent compilation of government documents covering the Swine Flu outbreak of 1976 is available here thanks to Daniel Cornwall at the Alaska State Library. This list of sources is also available on his page on Included are Congressional documents (bills, reports, hearings) that address some the same issues we are facing with the current outbreak -- very interesting! Many of these documents are available in full text (PDF) on Congressional Universe, which is available on the Library tab in Stanley. Please see the reference librarian for assistance in accessing these documents.

A librarian at Bowling Green State University has posted a library guide about The Swine Flu Scare of 1976. Sources for further exploration are included. Also, don't forget the check the CDC website for up-to-date information, including this page dedicated to coverage of the swine flu outbreak and this guide to proper handwashing.

Google has created an interesting resource that harnesses the power of its search engine to track trends in the spread of swine flu. Google analyzes popular search terms and the geographic origins of queries that are thought to indicate flu activity. See especially Experimental Flu Trends for Mexico. During past flu seasons, Google was able to accurately estimate the pattern of outbreak even before published CDC reports were released. The CDC is also teaming up with Twitter, using the power of real-time, online social networks to track the flu and disseminate information about the progress of the illness.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Law review publishing in plain English

Heather Waltman, Interlibrary Loan & Reference Librarian
If you'd like to read the latest scholarly publishing in a condensed, accessible format, take a look at This site makes available the abbreviated versions of law review articles from seven different law reviews. Articles published in Stanford Law Review, New York University Law Review, Cornell Law Review, Duke Law Journal, Georgetown Law Review, Northwestern Law Review and University of Chicago Law Review are summarized in "op-ed" pieces designed for a more generalist audience. According to the website,

"Each Legal Workshop Editorial undergoes the same rigorous editorial treatment and quality screening as the journals’ print content, but readers are able to offer comments and esteemed academics have the option of submitting response pieces, which are checked for citations and substance."

Other schools plan to contribute their law review content in the near future. For the layperson, as well as those who simply don't have time to pore over the latest journals in detail, is a site worth checking out.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Release of President's and Vice President's Tax Returns

Heather Waltman, Interlibrary Loan & Reference Librarian
News from the Government Documents department...

Honoring its pledge to achieve greater transparency in government, the White House has made public the President's and Vice President's 2008 state and federal income tax returns. You can view PDF copies of the returns on the White House blog.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Today's Legal News

Today's Legal News:

Worried About Student Loans? Listen to NPR

This week NPR is airing a series on student loans during this economic crisis. There will be a lot of helpful information regarding what students and colleges are doing to account for financial challenges. There is also information regarding federal student loans. To listen or read a transcript go to