The latest on real estate recordings and new technology from the Middlesex North Registry of Deeds in Lowell
A new version of MassLandRecords, the statewide search site for registry records, is now in the hands of registry personnel for testing and evaluation. While we’re not able to open it up for public use just yet, I can describe some of the features. The test version we’re using has all of our existing data and images and is updated in real time with new recordings. The new website is designed to function more like the 20/20 Public Search system now in the registries than like the current MassLandRecords site. For instance, almost all data containd in a particular record is immediately visible on screen when that record is first returned in response to a search. Just a few clicks later, the image of a particular document will appear in the right hand portion of your screen with the indexing data on the left side, just as with the Public Search system. There are some changes that will take some getting used to: We’ve asked for a simplified search to be the first thing to appear with an “advanced search” just a click away. So when a customer first logs on, the first search screen only has fields for first and last names. To further refine the search (doc type, town, date range), you click through to advanced search. The reason for this change is that we found many casual users “overpopulating” search screens and thereby excluding documents of interest. If someone sees a field, it seems, they feel obliged to type something in it. As time permits, we will report on more of the features of this new system and on a possible timetable of its public release.
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