Many of you will recall when Congress passed the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) Electronic Information Access Enhancement Act (Public Law 103-40) in 1993; this law expanded GPO’s mission to provide electronic access to Federal Government information, in addition to print. In response to this legislation, in June 1994, GPO launched GPO Access. For many years, GPO Access was America’s source for Government information online, but in 2009 GPO unveiled the next generation of Government information online with its Federal Digital System (FDsys).
On March 16, 2012, the transition from GPO Access to FDsys was completed with the shut down of GPO Access. After ushering GPO into the online world 16 years ago, GPO Access has been archived and taken offline. FDsys is now GPO's only Web site for online, official, and authentic Government information from all three branches of the Federal Government.
FDsys provides free access to nearly 50 different collections of Government information ranging from Public & Private Laws to United States Court Opinions to the U.S. Budget.
FDsys boasts key enhancements to GPO Access that allow users to:
- Easily search across multiple Government publications.
- Perform advanced searches against robust metadata about each publication.
- Construct complex search queries.
- Refine and narrow searches.
- Retrieve individual Government documents and publications in seconds directly from each search result.
- View more information about a publication and access multiple file formats for each search result.
- Access metadata in standard XML formats.
- Download content and metadata packaged together as a single ZIP file.
- Browse FDsys alphabetically by collection, by Congressional committee, by date, and by Government author.
- Utilize extensive help tools and tutorials.
What can libraries do? While URL redirects have been put into place for all GPO Access pages, please update your bookmarks and library Web pages so they point to FDsys. All links in FDsys can be bookmarked, including links to search results, browse pages, individual documents, and “more information” pages. If you would like to utilize FDsys logos on your Web site, you can obtain them here. For more information on the transition from GPO Access to FDsys, click here. In the coming weeks, a new suite of FDsys brochures will be made available on the FDLP Desktop for free ordering and downloading by depository libraries.
Are you interested in FDsys training? GPO has been working on a major FDsys training initiative that includes the creation of an educational curriculum for live, in-person training; live, virtual training; and educational videos. GPO has been conducting live, in-person FDsys training since November 2011. If your library is located in the Washington, D.C.; Maryland; or Virginia area and you would like to request an in-person session, please use askGPO. When asking a question, select the category, “Federal Digital System (FDsys)” and the subcategory, “FDsys Training.” In conjunction with the live training effort, GPO is also planning for virtual training. GPO is currently exploring a trial subscription with the iCohere tools for webinars and virtual meetings. There was a virtual FDsys training session on April 3, 2012 via iCohere. The webinar was recorded and will be made available in the near future. Finally, GPO is recording a series of FDsys educational videos. There are 32 planned videos, all between three and eight minutes long. The first video on Basic Searching in FDsys has been recorded and is currently in production. It will be released later this spring on fdsys.gov, gpo.gov, and fdlp.gov. After that, the other videos will be released incrementally.
Stay tuned to the FDLP Desktop and FDLP-L for more information on FDsys training and promotional tools.