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Internet Research

The Internet, available in most public libraries, is tailor-made for information gathering. The World Wide Web may stretch across the world, yet with its search engines it might turn out to be the best place for finding a service or a bargain right down the street.

Local business, schools, and government agencies now commonly have their own Internet sites. These sites vary as to usefulness depending on how well they have been written and constructed. The best sites clearly show their location (with directions, if applicable), hours of operation, their products, and even their personnel.

Community web sites, often run by private individuals, are a fine resource for local information. A simple Internet search for the community name will usually reveal several such sites. Many will combine news with advertising or listings of merchants.

One quick technique if you have any Internet search experience is to use a search engine and type in the name of your community in conjunction with the name of the product or service you seek. By this means you will very quickly drill down to specific local information. In most cases, your computer or browser software already knows where you live. When you search for a product or service without giving local information, sometimes you get local links just the same. Some people consider this feature an invasion of privacy, but you might think of it in a more positive light if you find the product or service you are looking for and save time and money in the process.

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