Thursday, November 13, 2008

New Tools For Searching The Internet

During a recent visit to the Internet Librarian Conference in Monterey I attended an excellent presentation by Mary Ellen Bates called "Super Searcher Shares." Below are the sites mentioned I thought were most interesting and possibly useful to researchers.

Google Translate allows the user to look for translated content from websites in multiple languages using a keyword search. The search interface is great for finding "invisible" content within sites that are not available in a language spoken by the searcher. Google Translate is still in beta so advanced search options such as limiting types of content are not available.

Google News Archive allows a searcher to input a keyword that returns results from online news sources according to a time line. The time line can then be used to isolate trends, look at selected content for specific time periods and to create historical overviews. The site is a nice addition to subscription databases such as Access World News and Proquest Historical Newspapers that lack this degree of date searchability, however, some content requires a fee. Many of the articles requiring a fee are available through library databases for free to patrons.

Google Trends charts the frequency of online searches and use of terms in the news. Regional location and source of language information over time is available. This is a great tool for isolating regional trends and key moments.

Yahoo Glue is a product of IT in India who have created a blended search engine that returns results including news, blogs, images and general sites on one page.

Searchme.com is a visual search engine with a beautiful interface that reminds me of an ipod shuffle. Returns can be isolated according to web, image, video and music results with category suggestions given to the right of the search box. This is a great search engine for those who prefer a visual approach.

Searchcloud.net allows a user to add keywords and then weight the term for importance in the search results according to the size of the cloud you choose. Instead of adding terms in a search box and allowing the search engine to determine the importance of each word, your decision regarding the relevance of each term decides the results.

Twing.com searches online discussion forums and communities for content often buried during regular search queries. This is a great tool for locating obscure experts not readily findable on the web.

Bates.info lists additional sites discussed at the conference.

Image courtesy of Modern Life

- Christopher Bishop

1 comment:

Jo da Plammer said...

Just found last week about a great tool called Omgili. It is actually a search engine for forums and discussions, and it has a great buzz section, graphs section and many advanced search features:

http://www.omgili.com