Find it Online: The Complete Guide to Online Research, Third Edition
||Author: Alan M. Schlein, Peter Weber, J. J. Newby|
List Price: $19.95
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Publisher: Facts on Demand Pr (August, 2002)
Sales Rank: 11,709
Average Customer Rating: 5 out of 5
Customer ReviewsRating: 5 out of 5
An excellent guide for research librarians
It used to be that a good reference librarian had only to keep up with the new books being published, and perhaps keep one eye on the newspapers and learned journals. Nowadays, one has to keep track of where best to find the answers to questions on the Web, as well. And it ain't easy! Massive printed volumes of Web addresses weren't much help even a decade ago because they were indiscriminate and seldom included annotations. What we needed -- and still need -- are a few collections of a (relatively) few carefully selected germane Web sites with the reasons given for their inclusion. And this discriminating and well thought out guide is the best one I've seen yet. It's intended mostly for the professional information broker or commercial researcher-for-hire, but librarians in any large public or academic library system do much the same sort of thing and will profit enormously by reading it. After an excellent introduction to the principles of online research, it's divided into topical sections: government resources, public records, news sites, business tools, and international (i.e., non-U.S.) research. Then there are several sections on managing and filtering what you find, how to evaluate its credibility and utility, and privacy concerns. Schlein spends considerable time on fee-based and "hidden" resources, too, not just the freebies on the public Web. Some of the sites he recommends I was already aware of, but there are many others I hadn't run across before. And I have been recommending his advice on search strategies and information massaging to my colleagues. There are a couple of annoying things about this otherwise superior book, however. One is the need for much, much tighter copyediting -- like saying "the software can be moderated" when they meant "modified," and the sometimes eccentric punctuation, and the tendency to break Web addresses in peculiar places (letting only the last character of ".html" fall to the next line gives you a quite different address). The other annoyance is a tendency by the author to laud (frequently) any book published by his editors, associates, or advisors -- so much so that it becomes embarrassing. But given the high quality of the book's actual content, I suppose I can live with that.
Rating: 5 out of 5
Excellent Guide Worth Owning
If your first concern with this sort of guide is learning to use the Internet to find quality information, or gain competitive or market intelligence using free resources on the Net, then 'Find It Online' is an excellent guide worth owning.
The analysis of what types of information you should and should not expect to find on the Internet is truly insightful, as are the suggestions on verifying the accuracy and authority of the information you uncover while searching.
The list of resources offered at the end of each section seems to provide thorough coverage of the topic, without overwhelming you with too many URL's to evaluate.
Finally, the section on online privacy and protection will open a casual user's eyes to the threats that online activities may entail.
Rating: 5 out of 5
The all-purpose single resource and reference book
Collaboratively edited by Peter Weber and J. J. Newby, and now in a fully revised third edition, Find It Online: The Complete Guide To Online Research by journalist and online trainer Alan M. Schlein is the all-purpose single resource and reference book to looking up the latest and most useful information on anything, anywhere, using the resources of the Internet. Individual chapters address the basics of the Internet, framing one's search strategy, the best tools and search engines available, government resources, evaluating the credibility of information found on the net, and a great deal more. Find It Online is a very highly recommended addition to any personal, professional, school or community library Internet Information Resources reference collection.
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