N.C. Department of Correction--Correction News--December 1997


By Nicole Sullivan

Can you answer the following questions about the DOC offender population: How many prison inmates were born in France? How many current probationers from Alamance County were convicted of "Failure to pay Taxi Driver?" How many female inmates and probationers, released during the FY 1996-97, are between the ages of 20 and 30 years old?

Suppose the Governor’s office called you with these questions? Most likely, you would direct them to the Office of Research and Planning, right? Well, suppose all the staff at Research and Planning was unavailable and the Governor’s office really needed a reliable answer immediately? What would you do?

The Office of Research and Planning has developed a computer program that gives everyone—including you—the ability to answer data questions like the ones presented. The computer program, aptly named the Automated System Query or A.S.Q., allows users to generate tables and bar graphs to answer data questions. The system uses 24 major variables and approximately one million records so the possibilities are endless. However, with training and experience, you can become a "deputized" researcher.

The initial release of this tool to DOC employees will be December 1, 1997. The program is accessible through the Internet, provides on-line instructions and help, and includes a survey for feedback. Eventually, this application will be available to anyone using the World Wide Web, particularly those interested in criminal justice information or other criminal justice agencies and professionals.

To access the system, you need at least a 386 IBM-compatible computer with Internet connection and a web browser. To take full advantage of the program, we recommend using Netscape Navigator 2.0 (or higher) or Microsoft Internet Explorer 3.0 (or higher).

And if the Governor’s office calls, tell them that: "there are 3 inmates in prison who were born in France; there are 0 probationers under current supervision from Alamance County who were convicted of "Failure to pay Taxi Driver;" and "there were 5,437 female inmates and probationers released in FY 1996-97 who are between the ages of 20 and 30 years old."

NC DOC Correction News- December 1997
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