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A review

Anyone who uses the BLM LR2000 search function knows it can be a challenge to get meaningful results. Often the service is down but you aren't notified of a problem with the system until you go through the whole complex search process to discover there was an "error". Frustrating at times.

Well it appears the BLM decided it was time to change the look and feel of the LR2000 search function. They notified users months ago that they were working on an improved version but they caught a lot of people by surprise when they introduced the NEW! IMPROVED! LR2000 on November 1 and shut down the functions of the OLD! BAD! LR2000 at the same time.

Problem was they didn't tell anyone. The old LR2000 still appears to be there and will allow you to do a search. That search returns an error, as mentioned earlier that's not unexpected or uncommon when using the LR2000. I use the LR2000 a lot when I need the most recent information on a land or claim case file. It took me nearly 24 hours after the changeover to get fed up enough with the old LR2000 not working to try the new LR2000 which has been available but not working for the last nine months. I'm hoping the BLM will set up that old LR2000 web address to redirect to the new LR2000 page so others won't have to waste their time beating a dead search system like I did.

The old LR2000 was clunky. It reminded me of an old unfamiliar broken down right hand drive truck with a Japanese language repair manual. It was really that awkward and counter intuitive. There were many blogs, manuals and videos devoted to explaining the esoteric mysteries of the BLM's version of public access to public records, I even helped write a few myself. I made good use of the old LR2000 on the days it was working and I was glad to have it when I could get results but it needed fixing.

The new LR2000 has a cleaner less intimidating interface with a slightly simpler set of options. I really don't like the "black topo" background the BLM now puts on all their web pages. If you like the black topo theme you are probably going to like the look of these new search pages better than the old ones.

The behind the scenes search function has changed a lot from the old LR2000. I tried it on several browsers and three operating systems. I had problems on every browser and system. The Search seems to hang in some circumstances, in others it returns results as quickly as the old LR2000. The actual search itself seems to be slower sometimes. Every browser I tried had problems when it had run a few searches. The searches would eventually hang and several loops would keep the browser so busy it would lock up. That's not something I'm used to experiencing. This is a new system so I'm hoping the BLM will get these glitches out soon.

The results of each search now displays in a new interface. Essentially there will be a window frame on the results page with the document displayed inside the frame as a PDF. Like the old LR2000 there are options to download the document in several formats including Excel, PDF and HTML. You can now modify or start a new search from the results page.

Land Matters has made an effort to bypass the clunky old LR2000 interface and allow you to directly access any claims BLM serial register page directly with a few clicks on a map. This turned out to be a lot quicker way to get information on claims in a specific area without having to pound through the old LR2000. Being a direct live link to the BLM the information is as current as possible unlike other mapping programs that present static information updated every month or so.

When the unannounced changeover in LR2000 search systems happened it broke Land Matters system of direct access. With more than 380,000 mining claims being actively tracked Land Matters had a problem. Claims Advantage Members also get several reports a month. In the last two days Land Matters had released two reports with a combined total of more than 20,000 maps and direct links to a broken LR2000. That's 400,000 missing documents. Sometimes life can be.... interesting. :blink:

Needless to say I have been busy. It took 24 hours but I deciphered the new LR2000 system, fixed the links to the serial register pages and corrected, compiled and uploaded new member reports. The mining claim serial register pages linked to on the maps load more quickly than the old ones did. If you have any problems with those maps or the Member Reports please let me know.

Please try out the new LR2000 and share your experiences here. Try the Mining Claims Maps at Land Matters and marvel at the new search results. If you like the way the map link system works we can add the feature for a lot more types of research.

Barry

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Guest Jennifer

You're incredible!!!! Has anyone told you that today?

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Your webpage Barry, is so much better. Do you know how much the BLM spends per year on their LR2000 system? Have you approached them about running/ contracting the system for them? I' sure there is a bidding system for it somewhere.. The old ALMRS system, the BLM spent over 400 million over 15 years, to a failed system before going to LR2000. 

Dave

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On 11/4/2017 at 5:01 PM, Reno Chris said:

I'll try out the new system in the next couple days and post back here with my thoughts.

Thanks Chris. I look forward to your input.

I'm still waiting for the BLM to bring the whole search system functional. There are a lot of search functions still marked "UNDER CONSTRUCTION". I'm wondering why they shut down the old site before they finished the new site? I do see little changes and some speed gains but no real progress in functions.

I sense a disturbance in D.C. that's being felt in Denver. I suspect the whole LR2000 upgrade project is under scrutiny. This might be an "interesting" year for some agency employees.

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On 11/5/2017 at 7:58 PM, DolanDave said:

Your webpage Barry, is so much better. Do you know how much the BLM spends per year on their LR2000 system? Have you approached them about running/ contracting the system for them? I' sure there is a bidding system for it somewhere.. The old ALMRS system, the BLM spent over 400 million over 15 years, to a failed system before going to LR2000. 

Dave

Thanks Dave, that means a lot coming from you. Land Matters was created to make access to this type of public information easy and reliably accessible.. Pretty much any information you might want is being compiled somewhere but the government has failed to provide easy or consistent access for the public.

I have thought about tracking the LR2000 budget but that means digging through 100's of pages of funding bills or sending an email that is unlikely to answer the question. Both are frustrating time consuming processes with no real possible outcome but anger. I do know it's in the 100's of millions of dollars.

Land Matters has provided this information for just three years and a month. It's a non profit organization that has an annual operating budget of less than $10,000. That budget is going to grow as we continue  serving more people and more types of information but comparing the Land Matters budget to the BLM's LR2000 budget is a good working example of the general ineffectiveness of many government agencies. Working for those agencies might get me a good salary but it's doubtful it would result in any better service than we can provide with Land Matters. I don't think the problems with the LR2000 are related to lack of skills but rather ineffective use of the good people the agency employs.

There are a lot more information projects than just the LR2000 in the works at Land Matters. GLO Patent and Survey copies from a click on the map is an upcoming feature. You can see part of that feature is already working for mineral patents on the Arizona, California and Colorado Mining Claim maps. Better roads on the maps and a much bigger Library are all planned for the future.

Barry

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Well. after much delay, I have finally gotten around to using the new LR 2000 portal or interface.

The drop down menus stink and are amazingly slow - makes me fell like I am back in college using a 300 baud remote Teletype in the basement of the Mackey Mines building. You have to remember that the LR in LR 2000 means Legacy Rehost - a throw back to central computers and running programs on cards. It is the definition of kludge.

I quickly figured out I could paste a line into the search box and bypass waiting for the drop downs, and this made a huge improvement. So I paste a good line of data in, then change the township and range as needed and run it. It then runs about the same as the other, but when running whole townships, gives all the claims without having to go an extra step of exporting it as a pdf. So in that way it is better. At least it is functional and you can get the data out.

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Thanks for sharing your experience Chris. I've pretty much given up on trying to use their system. Unlike other users I have a choice but from the complaints and questions I get some users have found the NEW LR2000 to be unworkable.

The LR2000 itself isn't a kludge. It's actually quite fast and efficient. I keep a mirrored copy of the entire current and past database on my work computer and speed is definitely not a problem. The kludge comes with the implementation of the interface (all those drop down menus). The contractors for the NEW LR2000 interface decided your local computer should do the computing work rather than their servers. This is done with javascript libraries that you download to your computer every time you load a page on the LR2000 website.

Javascript actually works pretty good for this type of searching if it's kept to a minimum. At Land Matters all our maps etc. run from one very small javascript library. At the BLM LR2000 they are using dozens of these libraries for every function. On the Serial Register search page alone I counted 138 javascript libraries to download and run on your computer every time you load a page or do a search. All that javascript code runs sequentially and ends up looking like the three stooges on vacation when it's running. The three stooges is not a good computing model.

I'm working on LR2000 search pages for the Land Matters website. I've been testing these and you should get results directly from the LR2000 in less than 4 seconds and there is no code to cause a slowdown when you run more than a few searches.

Unlike all the other mining claim websites and services Land Matters does live searches for you of the LR2000, General Land Office and State databases so the information returned is never stale. The Serial Register Page, Mineral Patent and Master Title Plats you can download through Land Matters are exactly the same documents you would get if you went directly through the LR2000 or GLO.

I'll put a post up here when the new search function is ready to use on Land Matters. In the meantime you can get those same current items from the maps with a couple of clicks.

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I have recently found the Land Matters site and installed it on Google Earth. It is easy to use and the sliding dimming bar makes it even better. The only drawback is to find out the actual location of a claim is to get a plat from the county where it was recorded. It does list that when you do a search.

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