Monthly Archives: April 2007

Library Information

If you’re a regular reader of the Bloggy Notion, you are well aware of all the photos and news about the ongoing library renovation. Well, the time has finally come and we are very excited to begin moving back to our newly renovated home in 200 McAllister. There will be lots of changes between May 20th – August 6th but you can check here for more details in the coming days.

For Your Searching Ease

One of the major differences in searching on Westlaw and Lexis is the default search. If you type in res ispa loquitor in Westlaw, the default connector is OR: you are searching for any document that has res or ipsa or loquitor. Well, that will bring up a lot of irrelevant documents so you need to put the phrase in quotation marks.
On Lexis the default is +2 or within 2 words. So you will pull up all of the documents that have res within 2 words of ipsa within 2 words of loquitor, giving you more focused results. You must put quotation marks around your words to get results with the exact phrase, but at least +2 is more like the default search on all the major web search engines you are used to using: AND.
Westlaw has just added a feature that allows you to change their default. Your basic default search would then be the same on both Lexis and Westlaw.
Just click Preferences, in the upper right corner of the screen, then click the Search link in the left frame. Under the Terms & Connectors heading, notice the Space Connector option. You can set the spaces.
Remember, though: if you want an exact phrase, use quotation marks. This is epecially important for phrases like “employment at will” where employment within 2 words of will could get many variations: employment that will, employment status will, employment contract will…You get the idea.

Biographical Info about Judges

Today’s panel, NUTS & BOLTS OF JUDICIAL CLERKSHIP INTERVIEWS (Wednesday, April 25, 12:40-1:30 pm in Rm. F) features tips on clerkship interviews and the overall clerkship application process, but how do you find out about the judges themselves?
Two great resources are the Almanac of the Federal Judiciary and the Daily Journal’s Judicial Profiles.
The Almanac of the Federal Judiciary Vol. I Profiles and Evaluations of All Judges of the U.S. District Courts contains detailed biographical information including publications, professional associations, academic honors, noteworthy rulings, media coverage and lawyers’ evaluations. This volume lists judges on the U. S. Tax Court, U. S. Claims Court, Court of International Trade, Court of Military Appeals, Bankruptcy Judges and U. S. Magistrates.
Vol. II Profiles and Evaluations of All Judges of the US Circuit Courts and the U. S. Supreme Court covers the same categories of information as found in Vol. I. Additionally, Vol. II provides introductory material to each circuit and the Supreme Court. Both volumes of the Almanac of the Federal Judiciary are available at the Circulation Desk. (Hint: vol. 1 District is red, and vol. 2 Circuit is blue.)
The Judicial Profiles comprise 13 volumes of biographical information of judges in all California state and federal courts. Often humorous or anecdotal, these biographies first appeared as columns in the L. A. Daily Journal. Profiles contain personal information as well as records of education and service. These volumes are available behind the Reference Desk.
For more resources on judicial information, here is the Hastings Library Judicial Directories Research Guide.

The Books: They Are A-Movin’

For the entire time the Library has been in temporary quarters, work within the Technical Services Department of the Library has continued. This means that new books, journals, microfiche and reporter volumes have been selected, ordered, received and catalogued. Since we didn’t have much extra space in the First Floor Library and since there also wasn’t any room in our temporary storage, the new acquisitions had to go somewhere – hence a new location was created called NMSTK for New Materials Stacks.
Now, we have to start coordinating our move back into the soon-to-be completed Library and the books will need to be moved from the First Floor Library, from the Gold Reading Room, from temporary storage at 50 UN Plaza, and from the New Materials Stacks. This may be confusing for our Library users and the Reference staff is committed to helping you find the books you need.
Basically, materials with call numbers A-G and L-Z are in the First Floor Library and call numbers H-KZ and P-PZ must be requested from storage. Please ask for assistance at the Reference Desk.

The Governor’s Chaptered Bill File

If you are doing California legislative history research, you’ll want to check the Governor’s Chaptered Bill File. When the governor signs a bill into law, the bill is filed with the Secretary of State and chronologically “chaptered.” For each bill that is chaptered, a file is created containing the documents the governor’s office received regarding that bill.
Hastings Law Library has all of the available film, from 1943 – 1995. The files typically contain, at a minimum, the enrolled bill report and a letter from the bill’s sponsor. In addition, there are files from bills vetoed by a governor; these files include the governor’s veto statement. For more information on California legislative history, see the Hastings Research Guide: Compiling a California Legislative History.