One tip for using Recovery.gov — Just don't use it.

I've written that I find the search interface at Recovery.gov to be useless, but some soul was kind enough to show me something I had missed — a way of researching stimulus data that lets you avoid the web site's problems.

If you go to this page and scroll to the bottom, then you can download an Excel file. (Don't be lured in by the links in the middle of that page, as I was originally — go all the way to the bottom.) Once you have your Excel file, you can just sort through the useful data on your PC or Mac.

This won't make up for the poor quality of the data itself, but at least you can avoid the frustrations of using the $18 million Recovery.gov website.

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