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Internet Research Techniques Google and Beyond Pulelehua RuthMarie Quirk MLS Fall 2005 Thanks: Joe Barker, John Kupersmith UC Berkeley Librarianns.

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Presentation on theme: "Internet Research Techniques Google and Beyond Pulelehua RuthMarie Quirk MLS Fall 2005 Thanks: Joe Barker, John Kupersmith UC Berkeley Librarianns."— Presentation transcript:

1 Internet Research Techniques Google and Beyond Pulelehua RuthMarie Quirk MLS Fall 2005 Thanks: Joe Barker, John Kupersmith UC Berkeley Librarianns

2 Origins Finding Information on the Internet: A Tutorial University of California Berkeley - Teaching Library Internet Workshops es/Internet/FindInfo.html

3 Workshop Objectives Google to the Max Beyond Google: directories other search engines Focusing YOUR research topic Search strategies Web pages selection

4 What are Search Engines ? Large databases Full text of web pages Use keywords matching words in pages you want Built by computer robot programs spiders No selectivity, no evaluation for reliability Each is different - Minimal standardization All accept “quotes” to search as phrase Good ones assume AND between words

5 How do you measure Web Search Engine Value ? 1.Size, freshness & unique pages How comprehensive are they? 2.Ranking of results What order are results displayed in? 3.Default search mode effectiveness Intuitive and easy to use? 4.Advanced search options Can you perform complex searches? Can you limit by date, type of site, etc? 5.Overall convenience and usefulness Do you get junk or good stuff?

6 Why Google? Biggest web search engine database 8+ billion pages PageRank™ often finds useful pages Word order, proximity and occurrence Popularity - links to pages Importance - traffic, quality of pages linking Many useful features, shortcuts, and special Google databases & services

7 What’s Googling? Crafting searches likely to work Knowing how Google “thinks” about your searches Exploiting Google’s strengths and weaknesses Knowing what Google’s special features and databases can do for you

8 Agenda How Google “thinks” Crafting basic Google searches Exploiting Google’s “FUZZY” search options Setting limits in Google searches Handy Google tools and shortcuts The best of Google’s family of databases Google Print & Google Scholar Emerging tools for finding books and articles Table with search tips

9 Let’s Try It ! Hands-on exercises

10 Is Google the best search engine? 8+ billion pages searchable Google Yahoo 4+ Billion pages fully indexed First 101 KB of a page, 120kb of pdf Good ranking Google by popularity Yahoo! by relevance and popularity; also pay for position sites sprinkled in Default AND Advanced search adequate Sometimes a lot of junk Googling to the Max

11 What are my choices besides Google and Yahoo? Look For New, Smart Linguistic Analysis Helps sort out and mine results Search Engine with Popularity Ranking by Subject Subject specific popularity Suggests search terms Suggest “expert” pages Useful results ranking Over 1 billion pages

12 Can I get a second opinion ? Statistics say no search engine has it all: Only about 60% of pages in Google are also in other search engines Only 50% of pages in any search engine database are also found in all others Use another large search engine

13 Let’s Try It ! Hands-on exercises

14 How do I search with peripheral vision ? Look for more specific terms Collect synonyms, alternative terms Agency or institution or other source ? Don’t assume you know what you’re looking for Strategies for art theft prevention “stolen art” prevention STOP, Interpol Lyon, other agencies CoPAT, object-id, other agencies

15 Directories Created by humans, not machines Selected, evaluated, annotated Organized into subject categories Librarians’ Internet Index ( By a group of California library professionals Infomine By UC consortium of library professionals Academic Info By a librarian in Arizona


17 How do I find “expert pages” and searchable databases ? Look in all the directories just mentioned Databases and “expert page” scattered throughout In routine searching: If a site calls itself a directory or database, you can search on it Google: genome database “cell biology” directory Look for society’s pages with collections of links Google: genome society Home Page of “International mammalian genome society” “Resources” button leads to key links on genome research

18 Let’s Try It ! Hands-on exercises

19 CRITICAL EVALUATION Why Evaluate What You Find on the Web? Anyone can put up a Web page about anything Many pages not kept up-to-date No quality control most sites not “peer-reviewed” less trustworthy than scholarly publications no selection guidelines for search engines

20 Look at the URL - personal page or site ? ~ or % or users or members Domain name appropriate for the content ? edu, com, org, net, gov,, uk, etc. Published by an entity that makes sense ? News from its source? Advice from valid agency?

21 Web Evaluation Techniques What do I look for when scanning the perimeter of the page ? Can you tell who wrote it ? Credentials for the subject matter? Is it recent or current enough ? If no links or other clues... Truncate back the URL Thinkquest/gail/text/ethics.html

22 Web Evaluation Techniques Indicators of quality Sources documented links, footnotes, etc. –As detailed as you expect in print publications ? do the links work ? Information retyped or forged why not a link to published version instead ? Links to other resources biased, slanted ?

23 Web Evaluation Techniques What Do Others Say ? Search the URL in Who links to the site? Who owns the domain? Type or paste the URL into the basic search box Traffic for top 100,000 sites See what links are in Google’s Similar pages Look up the page author in Google

24 Web Evaluation Techniques STEP BACK & ASK: Does it all add up ? Why was the page put on the Web ? inform with facts and data? explain, persuade? sell, entice? share, disclose? as a parody or satire? Is it appropriate for your purpose?

25 Try evaluating some sites... Search a controversial topic in Google: "nuclear armageddon" prions danger “stem cells” abortion Scan the first two pages of results Visit one or two sites try to evaluate their quality and reliability Use the worksheet as a guide to techniques

26 Questions?

27 Feedback Please complete the survey to provide me with feedback on how to improve this presentation. Mahalo

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