Google Searches Michigan For Fish Stockings

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Google added the State of Michigan to its list of state government partners in an effort to make local government information more accessible to citizens. Michigan adds its name to Virginia, Arizona, California, and Utah to states that have enlisted Google’s services.

From the sound of it, the alliance is aimed at avoiding scenes like this one from Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy:

"But Mr Dent, the plans have been available in the local planning office for the last nine months."

"Oh yes, well as soon as I heard I went straight round to see them, yesterday afternoon. You hadn’t exactly gone out of your way to call attention to them, had you? I mean, like actually telling anybody or anything."

"But the plans were on display…"

"On display? I eventually had to go down to the cellar to find them."

"That’s the display department."

"With a flashlight."

"Ah, well the lights had probably gone."

"So had the stairs."

"But look, you found the notice didn’t you?"

"Yes," said Arthur, "yes I did. It was on display in the bottom of a locked filing cabinet stuck in a disused lavatory with a sign on the door saying ‘Beware of the Leopard’."

Google will help Michigan implement its Sitemap Protocol, which allows search engines that support it to access and index state webpages, specifically records kept in large online databases so there are visible in search results.

 "For example," says Google’s State Policy Counsel John Burchett, "Michigan Education Assessment Program (MEAP) test scores for hundreds of schools spanning multiple years currently reside in over 25,000 documents.

"The new partnership will allow a user to find the results for the school name and test year, eliminating multiple searches requests and clicks. It will also help make accessible information about child day care centers and homes, workers compensation appellate decisions, fish stocking, Michigan school report cards, lane closures on Michigan roads, and more."

Who on Earth, may I ask, would want to buy fish stockings?

Google Searches Michigan For Fish Stockings
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