Your tax dollars pay for a significant amount of aviation infrastructure; not just airports and controllers, but also weather services, charting services, educational services, and yes, even the airman certification branch of the FAA. Historically, you had to pay the government printing office for paper copies of everything from regulations to charts (maps), but with the advent of the internet, much of this material is now available free of charge for you to use. Note that the FAA is currently in the midst of a study to determine how they can recover the cost of their charting responsibilities, so charts and related real-time items might not be free for long.
Regulations: In addition to the general Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) database used in most of the links on this site, the FAA has a regulation site with A/Ds and advisory circulars.
Educational Materials: The FAA publishes a variety of aviation handbooks and manuals.
Charts: FAA charts and other airport and airspace publications are available for download.
Weather Services: NOAA manages and hosts the Aviation Weather Center.
Flight Planning: In addition to a plethora of private flight-planning service providers, the FAA sponsors Direct User Access Terminal Service (DUATS), a weather information and flight planning service. Two providers, CSC and DTC, provide this service under contract. The services can be accessed at and respectively, as well as in app form.

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Did you know?...

Sufficient staffing at flight service stations has been a problem at least since the 1980s. In March of 1984 the FAA awarded a contract for a computerized voice response system to provide preflight weather briefings. On February 13th, 1990, DUATS, the Direct User Access Terminal Service, began operating. This allowed pilots to get briefings on their computers, although access required the user to dial into duats--web access didn't exist until the late 1990s.
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