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How to Search
Yahoo! is the largest subject directory on the Internet and is an excellent site for finding topics that appeal to the general public.
If you can't find it at Yahoo!, try Looksmart - another great directory for locating popular sites.
The Argus Clearinghouse reviews and rates top websites in a variety of academic areas.
At About.com, you'll find a directory with a twist. Each topic area has an assigned "Guide" responsible for writing articles and organizing links on the topic.
Three other useful directories for scholarly research are the...
Librarian index to the internet:
The Internet Public Library: www.ipl.org
Start with "Searchenginewatch.com" at http://searchenginewatch.com/
Searchenginewatch lists and reviews search engines, suggests which search engines cover the largest percentage of web pages available (and if size matters), and offers statistical data on just about every element of searching. The information here can be overwhelming, but its "First Time Visitors" link explains the organization of the whole. Start here for helpful tutorials on "search engine math" and "power searching for everyone."
Next, visit "Allsearchengines.com" at http://www.allsearchengines.com/
This site offers links to all the major search engines, including
AltaVista ...good place to start for looking for images
Google (at www.google.com) is by far the best search engine for most searches. An article in a March edition of Salon magazine (http://www.salon.com/tech/feature/2000/03/24/google_odp/print.html ) explains Google's relationship with the Open Directory Project (mentioned above) and why Google is such an effective search engine:
[Google is] fast and accurate, with an uncanny ability to put the thing you most wanted to find directly under your nose. The technology that makes this happen is equal parts rocket science and peer review. Google's hypertext-based system for ranking search results uses a mathematical algorithm to rate Web sites based on the number of other sites linking to them, then factors in how heavily linked those sites are. The result is a form of objectivity that springs directly from the Internet community, translating its distributed judgments into a quick, precise read of what matters and what you can do without.
On July 5th, Yahoo! announced a partnership with Google, making it the deault search engine for the internet's most popular site. See the article at http://www.searchenginewatch.com/sereport/00/07-yahoo.html for details.
Dogpile searches 14 search engines and subject directories as well as newsgroups, business news, and newswires. Dogpile supports full Boolean logic and phrase searching.
C4 displays results from 16 search engines, subject directories, and specialty databases. Use full Boolean logic and phrase searching.
At MetaCrawler, submit queries to 9 search engines and subject directories. Use implied Boolean logic (+/-) and phrase searching.
ProFusion searches 9 engines and subject directories. ProFusion allows full Boolean logic, but operators (AND, OR, AND NOT) must be in ALL CAPS. Change the Search mode drop-down menu to Boolean.
Other Resources/Handouts Like This One
A great place to start is this web presentation titled "Finding Quality Information on the Web"; it lists all the important sites that explain web searching (as I have started to do here): http://www.iona.edu/faculty/afranco/iima/webliog.htm
One site called "Finding and Evaluating Information" (http://www.unc.edu/cit/tips/eval.html) is part of UNC-Chapel Hill's Center for Instructional Technology (http://www.unc.edu/cit/)
This tutorial on finding information on the web, created by hardworking librarians at U.C. Berkeley, is perfect for beginners: http://www.lib.berkeley.edu/TeachingLib/Guides/Internet/FindInfo.html