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Media Alert
December 9, 2010

National Archives to Hold Press Briefing on Online Access Prototype for ERA

What:  Washington, DC…Discussion and demonstration for the media of the National Archives Online Public Access (OPA) prototype which is the National Archives flagship initiative in its Open Government Plan. It is the prototype for the public portal that will provide access to digitized records, descriptions of holdings that are not online, and eventually access to electronic records from the Electronic Records Archives (ERA). The prototype is to be made available to the public on December 27, 2010.

Who:  Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero
NARA Chief Digital Access Strategist Pamela Wright
NARA Digital Strategies and Services Technical Lead Carol Lagundo

When:  Thursday, December 16, 2010, 9 a.m.

Where:  National Archives Building, Adams Presidential Conference Room
Press should enter through the 700 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW entrance
Washington, DC 20408

Background

The Online Public Access (OPA) Prototype provides a centralized means of searching National Archives resources at once. Currently, researchers perform separate in the Archival Research Catalog (ARC) for catalog descriptions, histories, and biographies; Access to Archival Databases (AAD) for electronic records; and Archives.gov. The new interface illustrates a streamlined search experience for users, searching across all three of these resources. The prototype currently contains all of data from ARC, and seven series from AAD, containing 10.9 million permanent electronic records. Additionally, the prototype provides access to one million electronic records currently in ERA, which are not available elsewhere online.

When we roll out the prototype on December 27, NARA will ask the public for feedback and analyze that information to make further refinements. Our goal is to work with the public to ensure a user-friendly search and display.

NARA is building ERA to fulfill its mission in the digital age: to safeguard and preserve the records of our government, ensure that the people can discover, use, and learn from this documentary heritage, and ensure continuing access to the essential documentation of the rights of American citizens and the actions of their government.

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For press information, contact the National Archives Public Affairs Staff at (202) 357-5300.

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