July 30, 2004

Faceted Search Patent

I was searching for "Avi Rappaport" on the web today, wondering if she might have a blog. Came across this patent related to providing faceted search.

July 29, 2004

Alternative Search

The editors at ResourceShelf couldn't help but poke fun at how lost people got when Google was down for a bit on Monday. They offered the following advice, to which I say, Amen and Hallelujah, and I might add, for those that don't know, many of these databases are available to you online, in the convenience of your very own home, once you get your library card and figure out how it works.

Check out which subscription databases might be freely available to you via your local public, school, academic, or special library. You might actually find something that is more useful than Google.

July 23, 2004

Old Fashioned Search


Brazilians on Orkut

Everyone's discussing the Brazilian invasion of Orkut these days - slashdot, thesocialsoftwareweblog, sociology of online journals, langemark's cafe, boing boing - try a bloglines search for Brazilian Orkut, or Brazilians Orkut.

I dashed off the comment below on a few of these blogs - just some quick thoughts that aren't quite expressed as clearly as I would like, but hopefully you'll get the gist of it:

The problem isn't just about language. The impact on my experience as a user is profound. First of all, Google's servers (and/or the lame code Orkut is based on?) can't handle the load - the user base has just grown too fast, whereas it was growing at a leisurely pace when the majority of users were from the United States. Secondly, netiquette is out the window. The original user base had so much in common, being mostly technorati, that common gaffes were avoided. There was no abuse of FOAF emails, posts were spare and to the point (and often gratifyingly hilarious) with judicious use of links, users knew not to easily take offense and to account for the vagaries of electronic communication. Now take all of that proper behavior and flip it on its head and you have what Orkut is today. A mess.

July 15, 2004

Bloglines Rocks

I cannot believe how incredibly cool Bloglines is. Google should jump on it and acquire them! I never understand how people can offer such amazing free resources. What the heck is the revenue stream? No ads, no subscription fees, just an incredibly useful tool for wading through the morass of information available in the burgeoning blogging world.

I just don't have time to do much current interest reading at my job. I skim Information Today and Information Outlook and that's about it. With Bloglines, though, I can open it once a week or once a month, and quickly skim all the latest from thoughtful bloggers in my field like Gary Price. Today, after 30 seconds of reading, I picked up a very useful tidbit for work about the Foundation Center's new PubHub database.

Bloglines also has a new Clippings function that makes it very easy to save references to particular posts.

I am to be liking this.