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Registration for Advanced Searching Seminar

Advanced Searching and Organization of Internet Information


Abbreviated Course Outline
(A password for full outline access will be mailed to course registrants 1 week prior to first course date)


Part I:  Managing On-Line Internet Information

Traditional Browser and Windows Tools

Best of New Tools

Quality of Information

Accessibility of Information

Part II:   Boolean and Beyond

Internet as the Appropriate Research Tool

General Search Engines and Directories

Legal Search Engines, Directories and Webliographies

Recommended Search Engine Software

Databases:   The "Hidden Web"

Search Strategies

Special Note on Searching for Historical Securities Pricing

Internet-Based Pay Services

Recommended On-Line Research Information Resources



Part I:  Managing On-Line Internet Information:  Quantity, Quality and Accessibility

The Internet is a researcher's dream - and nightmare.  

Researchers must not only locate information, they must also assess its quality and organize resources so that the information can be easily accessed from multiple locations such as the office, the courtroom, at home and on the road.

This training sessions begins with these topics to allow participants to gain practical experience with information management and related software tools throughout the rest of the training day focusing on advanced search techniques.


1.

Traditional Browser and Windows Tools

a.

Brief Review of "Bookmarks" and "Favorites"

b.

Using browser functions as research organization tools (history files and "open new window") techniques

c.

Windows tools

 

2.

Best of New Tools for Organizing Internet Information (overview and "basic training" in the use of each tool - participants are encouraged to use these tools during the second half of the program to determine which tools best suit individual research and organizational requirements)

a.

PowerMarks©

b.

PeakJet©

c.

AltaVista Discovery©

d.

Copernic©

e.

Enfish Tracker Pro©

f.

LegalTracker©

g.

New developments

 

3.

Quality of Information

a.

Guidelines for assessing reliability and validity of Internet information

(1)

Ethical duty to verify accuracy of Internet information.  See Skelton v. Martin, 1996 Fla.App.LEXIS 2020, Case No. 94-04093 (Fla.Dist.Ct.App.1996) (plaintiff had no Federal or state statutory right to accurate government information on the Internet

(2)

Assessment guidelines

(a)

Identity of publisher(s) and author(s)

(b)

Reputation of publisher(s) and author(s)

(c)

Publication motives/purposes of publication

(d)

Information freshness and planned updates

(e)

Source of information

(f) Subject matter bias

(g)

Contact and authentication information

(3)

MEL:  Evaluating Health Information on the Web©

b.

X-Portal© and Alexa© Software

c.

Librarians' email lists

 

4.

Accessibility of Information

a.

Retrieval software

b.

Coordinating resources in and out of the office:   bookmark publication, bookmark import programs and portals


Part II:  Boolean and Beyond

Advanced searching skills are no longer necessary to find basic consumer information on the Internet.  

But locating more esoteric information can be difficult and time consuming.  

For example, Internet research in a medical malpractice law firm may focus heavily on the medical databases available only through the "hidden Web" for which basic search engines are generally useless. 

Researchers must also know when to use the Internet, and when to use other research tools.


1.

Internet as the Appropriate Research Tool

a.

Characteristics of the Web

(1)

Age of the Internet:  little on-line information predating 1990

(2)

Access:  Web publication quick, easy and inexpensive

(3)

Historical Use:  developed for military, scientific and technical academic communities

(4)

Constituency:  computer-oriented individuals and organizations

(5)

Programmable and searchable

(6)

Visual (and becoming aural)

b.

Research subjects appropriate for Web based on Web characteristics

(1)

Statistical data

(2)

Current events (news and weather)

(3)

Public opinion

(4)

Alternative viewpoints

(5)

New product information, including product specifications

(6)

Hardware and software information, including software downloads

(7)

Academic research, especially in science, math, engineering and healthcare

(8)

New or continuously updated government publications (Fed Register, Federal agency information, on-line forms)

(9)

Collections of changing information such as stock, commodity and product prices, telephone numbers, and surface and email addresses

(10)

Data collections

(11)

"Breaking" legal news (especially US Supreme Court opinions)

(12)

Photograph and aural recording collections

(13)

Consumer information (healthcare, genealogy, financial, etc.)

(14) New and proposed legislation, conference and committee reports, etc.

c.

Research subjects NOT appropriate for legal Web research

(1)

Historical information (pre-1992)

(2)

Case law (other than very recent decisions where researcher has already identified a specific pending case - lack of "official" status)

(3)

Traditional statutory research (lack of information on previous versions of statute)

(4)

Treatises, annotations

d.

Duty to search the Internet:   See Whirlpool Financial Corp. v. GN Holdings, Inc., 67 F.3d 605 (7th Cir. 1995) (reasonable investor presumed to have information in the public domain, including the Internet)

e. Time factor:   faster accessibility of information from another source

 

2.

General Search Engines and Directories

a.

Selected new search engines/directories

(1)

Open Directory©:  volunteer driven

(2)

Google©:  link popularity, ability to find non-indexed pages

(3)

The Electric Monk©:  natural language searching

(4)

DataGold©:  European search engine

b.

Search engine changes

(1)

AltaVista©:  paid listings (retraction note:  7/23/99); targeting of sophisticated researchers; search freshness guarantee

(2)

Snap©:  Global Brain© software used to rank searches

(3)

Netscape©: using Google© and Open Directory© to power search engine

(4) Northern Lights©:  government searches, WEFA Group (economic forecasts, financial analysis), Investext

c.

Advanced search engine and directory searches

(1)

Search engine/directory features comparison

(2)

Constructing Boolean searches

(3)

Search bots:  The Informant©

d.

Specialized non-legal search engines:  audio and video

(1) Scour.Net©
(2) Mamma©
(3) AltaVista©
(4) Lycos©
e. Other general search engines of interest:

(1)

Cyberholics©

(2)

Alta Vista Canada Search Engine©

(3)

Ask Jeeves©

(4) WebMarket©
(5) MySimon©
(6) GoTo.com©
(7) Motley Fool©
(8) NoWonder©
(9) TotalNews©
(10) OneLook©
f. Ranking the Search Engines:  search engine comparison chart
(1) Search Engine Torture Test, About.com Web Search Guide
(2) Find it on the Web,  PC World, June, 1999
(3) Search Engine Shoot-Out, CNet, 4/7/99
g. Search engine coverage on the Web:  search engine bias and depth of coverage
(1) Bias:  site popularity, U.S., commercial
(2) Depth:  Nor more than 16% through any one search engine (cumulative coverage less than 42%)

 

3.

Legal Search Engines/Directories and Webliographies (webliographies are similar to specialized search directories, but "webliographies" are often sponsored by an "interested" individual rather than an organization. Webliographies may or may not searchable and are usually very narrowly focused. Links often are annotated)

a.

FindLaw© (primarily U.S. based legal search directory)

b.

Hieros Gamos© (U.S. and international legal search directory)

c.

Juristic Park© (primarily U.S. legal resources

d.

Katsuey Kat's Legal Links© (partially annotated collection of legal resource links)

e.

The Legal Pad©

f.

LawCrawler©

g.

LawRunner© (by AltaVista)

 

4.

Recommended search engine software

a.

Copernic©

b.

PeakJet©

c.

Alexa©

d.

Bookmarklets

f.

LegalSeeker©

 

5.

Databases:  The "Hidden Web"

a.

Locating databases

(1)

Lycos©:  approx. 7,000 databases indexed

(2)

Direct Search©:  links to specialty databases

(3)

Infomine Scholarly Internet Resource Collections©

(4)

Alpha Search© (gateway sites)

(5)

Internet Sleuth©

(6)

WebData©

(7)

Social Science Information Gateway©

b.

Searching databases

(1)

Searching from database locators

(2)

General rules of thumb

c.

Legal Databases

(1)

Law Office.com©

(2)

Federal Justice Statistics Resource Center

(3)

Guide to Foreign and International Legal Databases©

(4)

Guide to European Legal Databases, Update 3©

(5)

Databases Patent, Bibliographic, and AIDS©

(6)

US Patent Full-Text Database Manual Search

(7) Law Guru©
(8) Federal Civil Trials (Cornell)

d.

Medical Databases

(1)

Healthweb©

(2)

Medical Matrix©

e.

Corporate Databases

(1)

Corporations Database Query©

(2)

Edgar; 10-K Wizard Search©

(3) Missouri Corporate Database
(4) Companies House©

f.

Miscellaneous Databases

(1)

OSU Online Image Database©

(2)

PLANTS National Database©

(3)

USDA Economic Research Service©

6.

Search Strategies

7.

Special Note on Searching for Historical Securities Pricing

8.

Internet-based Pay Services

9.

Recommended On-Line Research Information Resources



Webmaster: Christine A. Gilsinan
Copyright © 1999-2000 Knowledge Management Seminars
Last modified: 23 August 2000