1003.0 - LEP Newsletter (Issue No. 47), Feb 2004  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 05/03/2004   
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Welcome to my first NetNews column, taking over from Gary Dunnet who has taken up a new position.

I am enjoying the challenges of my new position in statistical publishing which is at the forefront of ABS technological developments. I know libraries are vitally interested in technological advances and in this column I will be outlining some of the latest developments in the ABS to keep you informed.

Usability testing, the new buzz word for web site evaluation, is in full swing at the ABS and we have been testing proposed changes to our web site home page and new product portal layout. Testers, recruited from outside the ABS, took part in prototype testing in December last year in the ABS' specially developed 'Cognitive Lab'. Results from the testing are now being incorporated into more detailed designs planned for release later this year.

Australia's population reached 20 million on 5 December 2003. Federal Treasurer Peter Costello gave a speech at the ABS to mark the occasion, broadcast live to staff and made available almost immediately on the ABS web site. These can be viewed from the 'Population Clock' page of the ABS web site. From the ABS home page, choose 'Statistics' and then 'Australia's current population' to find the Population Clock.

The self-service Email notification system, launched on the ABS web site in August 2003, continues to grow in popularity with more than 1,900 clients making use of the facility by early February this year. This free service allows users to register topics of interest and receive email messages on days when products of interest are released. Register by clicking here.

Work continues on improving the search facilities on the ABS web site. This service is currently being trialled and a number of LEP libraries have assisted us with this, prior to its full release.

For further information on this, or any of the other developments that I have mentioned, please contact me at mano.georgopoulos@abs.gov.au

Mano Georgopoulos, ABS Statistical Publishing Development