ABOUT INTERNET SEARCHING
Title: Surfing and Searching
Description: This easy-to-read article from Fortune magazine outlines why it is important to not only to use Internet search engines, but to combine these tools with browsable lists. The article quotes Reva Basch who says, righlty so, that one good way to find information is to monitor USENET newsgroups for experts in a subject area and then query those experts directly. It just goes to show that people are the real sources of informaiton, not computers.
Author: Bates, Mary Ellen
Title: Seven Deadly Sins of Online Searching
Description: This article humorously defines seven things you should avoid when doing online searching: pride, haste, avarice, apathy, sloth, narrow-mindedness, and ignorance. These "sins" are put into the perspective of online searching and are intended to be kept in mind when doing traditional online searches as well as Internet-based seach strategies. Not only is this a quick and easy read. It makes a lot of sense too.
Author: Brandt, D. Scott
Title: Relevancy and searching the Internet.
Citation: Computers in Libraries ISSN:1041-7915 Sept 1996, v16, n8, p35(3)
Description: Relevancy has long been important in the world of information gathering. It's vital in tasks such as locating the most relevant resources, using the most relevant retrieval methods, and making sure the information found is relevant to the need. Relevancy has many synonyms-applicability, correspondence, pertinence-and relates to many kinds of decisions we make in our lives. Because so many of these decisions require sifting through massive amounts of information, relevancy is an important factor in making the best decisions we can.
Author: Brooks, Monica
Title: Research on the Internet
Description: In one (slightly lengthy) page, this Argus Clearninghouse approved site outlines how to do research on the Internet. It lists objectives, Web basics, compares and contrasts search engines, describes Boolean logic, OPACS, FTP, and important aspects of government information. This is a fine research aid, and a great starter page for students in academe.
Author: Campbell, Karen
Title: Understanding and Comparing Search Engines
Description: This document lists reviews of Internet search engines. It is a good place to begin when you want to see what other people have said about the available tools.
Author: Clyman, John
Title: Finding your needle in the Web's haystack.
Citation: PC Magazine ISSN:0888-8507 July 1996, v15, n13, p39(3)
Description: "Six popular World Wide Web search engines are reviewed. DEC's Alta Vista is the most powerful and comprehensive full-text search system, often generating five to ten times as many matching documents as other engines. The default Simple Search is easy to use, but most users will want to learn the Advanced Search mode, which supports Boolean operators and case-sensitive and proximity searches. Excite is one of the oldest search engines and has fallen behind competitors. Its quirky interface is annoying, and users cannot modify the original query from the results page. InfoSeek generally finds the desired information and has a good query-by-example function. Lycos combines full-text searching with two searchable indexes, but neither index is comprehensive. ... WebCrawler is adequate but not especially powerful. Yahoo! is purely a searchable index built by real people instead of automated agents. Users can search only for words in the category name or site summary."
This article, while just slightly dated, provides a more than adequate overview of the most popular Internet search engines.
Author: Community Networking
Title: Research Works
Description: Like AskScott, this service models it format around a librarian reference interview. It frames the services it provides in the form of questions:
- Are you looking for a particular research resource
- Can we suggest the best resources to approach
- Would you like some rraining in professional research
- Or perhaps our past projects, business plan and background will interest you!
Number 2, "Can we suggest the best Resources to Approach", is the most interesting since it presents you with a tiny form to complete and based on your input suggests tools for searching.
Personally, I think this sort of service represents a future opportunity for librarians to share their expertice with information seekers. There is no reason why the sort of service represented here could not be expanded and improved to become a more comprehensive service.
Author: Duda, Andrea L. editor
Title: Untangling the Web
Description: This is a "Proceedings of the Conference Sponsored by the Librarians Association of the University of California, Santa Barbara and Friends of the UCSB Library" from April 26, 1996 University Center, University of California, Santa Barbara. The linked abstracts and papers describe all aspects of World Wide Web developement in a library setting. Of particluar interest are "Yahoo! Cataloging the Web" by Anne Callery, "Spinning a Web Search" by Mark Lager, and "Spiders and Worms and Crawlers, Oh My: Searching on the World Wide Web" by Ann Eagan and Laura Bender.
Author: Haskin, David
Title: Right Search Engine
Description: "We tested six of the leading search engines: AltaVista, Excite HotBot, Infoseek, Lycos, and WebCrawler. We found that each can find an enormous amount of information, but a few are clearly superior in the way they home in on the most relevant information and in the interface they offer."
Author: Hearst, Marti A.
Title: Interfaces for searching the Web.
Citation: Scientific American ISSN:0036-8733 March 1997, v276, n3, p68(5)
Description: "New user interfaces are being developed to help users find information on the Internet using an intuitive and explorative approach. This system places a topic within an information tree which users can follow toward the specific information they need."
This article outlines possibilities for spacially organizing information and search results for the purposes of better retrieval and analysis.
Author: Internet Scout Project
Title: Searching the Internet
Description: This is an excellent set of pages! It not only lists search engines and general as well as specific browsable lists, but it describes these things in greater detail than most of the other "About Internet Searching" pages listed in the present guide. This is one of the better places to start if you want a no-nonsense introduction to searching the Internet.
Author: Lynch, Clifford
Title: Searching the Internet.
Citation: Scientific American ISSN:0036-8733 March 1997, v276, n3, p52(5)
Description: The increasing number of Web sites on the Internet will require changes in present day search engines to enable them to find the information that the user specifically requires. This may also involve changes in the way data or information is formatted for entry into the Internet.
Author: Mauldin, Michael L.
Title: Searching the World Wide Web; Lycos: design choices in an Internet search service.
Citation: IEEE Expert ISSN:0885-9000 Jan-Feb 1997, v12, n1, p8(7)
Description: Lycos is a search engine that can be used for collecting, storing and retrieving information about pages on the World Wide Web. Lycos is based on the LongLegs program, and incorporates Pursuit retrieval engine and Lycos Catalog of the Internet. It uses a proprietary spider program written in C for foraging. Its search is based on popularity heuristic and is biased towards more popular and useful Web pages. The Pursuit retrieval program uses an inverted file containing document identifiers. Lycos simplifies the search for relevant information in the Web.
Author: Munson, Kurt I.
Title: World Wide Web indexes and hierarchical lists: finding tools for the Internet.
Citation: Computers in Libraries ISSN:1041-7915 June 1996, v16, n6, p54(4)
Description: Indexes and hierarchical lists are two types of search tools for locating information on the World Wide Web and other Internet resources. Indexes, such as Lycos and Open Text, provide access to records by matching search terms against descriptive cataloging. Hierarchical lists, such as Yahoo!, use descriptive and subject cataloging to group common resources by location.
Author: Notess, Greg
Title: Search Engines Showdown
Description: "This site summarizes, reviews, and compares the search features and database scope of the Internet search engines and finding aids." It does this by dividing its content to the following nine parts: search engines, directories, multi-search, USENET & others, strategies, statistics, reviews, definitions, and bibliography. The bibliography alone is worth the price of admission.
Author: Notess, Greg R.
Title: Searching the hidden Internet
Citation: Database ISSN:0162-4105 June-July 1997, v20, n3, p37(4)
Description: There are several sites on the Internet that cannot be found through the automated indexing of various sites. Some of this information can only be found in the PDF file. A new level of Internet databases and smart searching techniques will make these sites more accessible. Some sites on the World Wide Web require registration or a log-in procedure.
Author: Notess, Greg R.
Title: Searching the Web with Alta Vista
Description: The following sentence from the article itself pretty well sums up its content:
"I compared a single, non-truncated keyword search on Alta Vista with the same search on the best known of the other search engines: Inktomi, InfoSeek, Open Text Index, Lycos, Excite, and WebCrawler. Searching on a fairly distinctive single word eliminates the disparity among the search engines in how they handle multiple word searches. In each of the five searches, the Alta Vista search resulted in a much higher number of hits. In fact, Alta Vista searches came up with two to six times the number of hits found by the second ranking search engine."
The article goes on to describe the strengths of AltaVista when compared to other search engines.
Author: Stix, Gary
Title: Finding pictures on the Web.
Citation: Scientific American ISSN:0036-8733 March 1997, v276, n3, p54(2)
Description: "Search engines are under developed to increase their ability to find graphic information on the Internet. Current search engines rely on text captions to access graphic information. Future developments would incorporate the ability to compare various visual features, such as contrast, coarseness, directionality, shapes and color."
The article describes some future possibilities for locating graphics on the Internet.
Author: Tweney, Dylan
Title: Searching is my business: a gumshoe's guide to the Web.
Citation: PC World ISSN:0737-8939 Dec 1996, v14, n12, p182(8)
Description: The Web can be a powerful research tool, but users must know what they are looking for and focus carefully to avoid wasting time. Techniques for maximizing Web productivity are presented. Web directories such as Magellan and Yahoo are fast, no-nonsense tools that point directly to useful sites but cover only a small fraction of all Web content. Search engines use automated 'spider' programs to locate information but tend to generate too many irrelevant matches if the user is not careful. Techniques for narrowing a search include being specific and adding Boolean operators. There are also 'meta' search tools on the market that organize and consolidate search results by sending queries to multiple search engines simultaneously. Numerous search assistants are available, but few are useful; three of the better ones are Knowledge Discovery's More Like This, Symantec's Internet FastFind and Quarterdeck's WebCompass 2.0. Offline browsers such as FreeLoader and First Floor's Smart Bookmarks save time and money.
Title: Searching the Web
Description: This site represents the most comprehensive collection in this guide. It includes pointers to hundreds of search engines, tutorials, and Internet directories. The collection is divided into many subject areas, including: Indices, All-in-One Search Pages, Comparing Search Engines, How to Search the Web, Indices to Web Documents, Regional Robots, Spiders, etc. Documentation, Search Engines, Web Directories.
Author: Zorn, Peggy; Emanoil, Mary; Marshall, Lucy; Panek, Mary
Title: Advanced web searching: tricks of the trade
Citation: ONLINE (WILTON, CONN), vol. 20, no. 3, 12ppp, 1996
Description: "The purpose of this report is to look closely at several Web search systems that provide advanced search features and search a comprehensive and authoritative database of Internet sites. Based on these two key requirements, the Alta Vista, InfoSeek, Lycos, and Open Text are considered for evaluation. The search features looked for include complex Boolean, duplicate detection, keyword(s) in context, limiting retrieval by field, proximity and/or phrase searching, relevancy ranking of results, retrieval display options, search set manipulation, and truncation."