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7.1. General concept of DIALogue

The general concept of the DIALogue component of Project DIAL is that of using the Internet to provide to those involved in the development of legislation in Member Countries of the Bank (particularly in Developing Member Countries) a free (or, possibly, low-cost) means of obtaining some level of guidance on development law issues from eminent Panelists with experience in various areas of development law, as well as possibly obtaining assistance from other Authorised User of the facility. It was also intended to help those involved in the development of legislation in Member Countries to find and make contact with potential consultants on development law, which may lead to valuable ongoing contact independent of the DIALogue facilities.

The DIALogue facility is intended to provide an easy-to-use interface (using the World-Wide-Web) to what is essentially an e-mail based facility. It is intended to make it easy for Authorised Users to identity sources of possible advice, and provide access to those sources in an automated fashion.

Whereas DIAL Index and DIAL Search are like trying to use a Law Library by yourself, DIALogue is more akin to turning to a Reference Librarian for assistance. The difference is that you can ask many Reference Librarians at the same time, and other users of the Library as well, without being asked to leave the Library.

The DIALogue prototype has only been available since 1 December 1997, and has not received any significant testing as yet.

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