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Kendriya Vidyalaya Port Trust, Kochi

IPL2 (Internet Public Library): Indexing the invisible web

What is the invisible web?
The “visible web” is what you can find using general web search engines. It’s also what you see in almost all subject directories. The “invisible web” is what you cannot find using these types of tools. It is also known as the “deep web”.

These types of pages used to be invisible but can now be found in most search engine results:

– Pages in non-HTML formats (pdf, Word, Excel, PowerPoint), now converted into HTML.
– Script-based pages, whose URLs contain a ? or other script coding.
– Pages generated dynamically by other types of database software (e.g., Active Server Pages, Cold Fusion). These can be indexed if there is a stable URL somewhere that search engine crawlers can find.

There are still some hurdles search engine crawlers cannot leap. When you search in a library catalog, article database, statistical database, etc., the results are generated “on the fly” in answer to your search. Because the crawler programs cannot type or think, they cannot enter passwords on a login screen or keywords in a search box. Thus, these databases must be searched separately. Google Scholar is part of the public or visible web. It contains citations to journal articles and other publications, with links to publishers or other sources where one can try to access the full text of the items. This is convenient, but results in Google Scholar are only a small fraction of all the scholarly publications that exist online. Much more – including most of the full text – is available through article databases that are part of the invisible web. The UC Berkeley Library subscribes to over 200 of these, accessible to our students, faculty, staff, and on-campus visitors through our Find Articles page. Search engine companies exclude some types of pages by policy, to avoid cluttering their databases with unwanted content. Think of the billions of possible web pages generated by searches for books in library catalogs, public-record databases, etc. Each of these is created in response to a specific need. Search engines do not want all these pages in their web databases, since they generally are not of broad interest. A web page creator who does not want his/her page showing up in search engines can insert special “meta tags” that will not display on the screen, but will cause most search engines’ crawlers to avoid the page.

IPL2 is a tool which can aid you in searching the “invisible web”.

IPL2 (IPL stands for Internet Public Library) was formed in January 2010 by merging the collections of IPL and LII (Librarian’s Internet Index) websites. The site is hosted by Drexel University’s College of Information Science & Technology, and a consortium of colleges and universities with programs in information science are involved in developing and maintaining the IPL2.

IPL2 is a public service organization and a learning/teaching environment. To date, thousands of students and volunteer library and information science professionals have been involved in answering reference questions for our Ask an IPL2 Librarian service and in designing, building, creating and maintaining the IPL2’s collections. It is through the efforts of these students and volunteers that the IPL2 continues to thrive to this day.

IPL2 has the following sections:

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Expert Google Search Tips

Google is one of the tools which make Internet what it is today. Here are some of the unknown but very effective search tips you can use with this search engine.

Explicit Phrase:
Lets say you are looking for content about internet marketing. Instead of just typing internet marketing into the Google search box, you will likely be better off searching explicitly for the phrase. To do this, simply enclose the search phrase within double quotes.

Example: “internet marketing”

Exclude Words:
Lets say you want to search for content about internet marketing, but you want to exclude any results that contain the term advertising. To do this, simply use the “-” sign in front of the word you want to exclude.

Example Search: internet marketing -advertising

Site Specific Search:
Often, you want to search a specific website for content that matches a certain phrase. Even if the site doesn’t support a built-in search feature, you can use Google to search the site for your term. Simply use the “site:somesite.com” modifier.

Example: “internet marketing” site:www.smallbusinesshub.com

Similar Words and Synonyms:
Let’s say you want to include a word in your search, but want to include results that contain similar words or synonyms. To do this, use the “~” in front of the word.

Example: “internet marketing” ~professional

Specific Document Types:
If you’re looking to find results that are of a specific type, you can use the modifier “filetype:”. For example, you might want to find only PowerPoint presentations related to internet marketing.

Example: “internet marketing” filetype:ppt

This OR That:
By default, when you do a search, Google will include all the terms specified in the search. If you are looking for any one of one or more terms to match, then you can use the OR operator. (Note: The OR has to be capitalized).

Example: internet marketing OR advertising

Phone Listing:
Let’s say someone calls you on your mobile number and you don’t know who it is. If all you have is a phone number, you can look it up on Google using the phonebook feature.

Example: phonebook:617-555-1212 (note: the provided number does not work – you’ll have to use a real number to get any results).

Area Code Lookup:
If all you need to do is to look-up the area code for a phone number, just enter the 3-digit area code and Google will tell you where it’s from.

Example: 617

Numeric Ranges:
This is a rarely used, but highly useful tip. Let’s say you want to find results that contain any of a range of numbers. You can do this by using the X..Y modifier (in case this is hard to read, what’s between the X and Y are two periods.) This type of search is useful for years (as shown below), prices, or anywhere where you want to provide a series of numbers.

Example: president 1940..1950

Stock (Ticker Symbol):
Just enter a valid ticker symbol as your search term and Google will give you the current financials and a quick thumb-nail chart for the stock.

Example: GOOG

Calculator:
The next time you need to do a quick calculation, instead of bringing up the Calculator applet, you can just type your expression in to Google.

Example: 48512 * 1.02

Word Definitions:
If you need to quickly look up the definition of a word or phrase, simply use the “define:” command.

Example: define:plethora

Hope these tips help you harness the power of the Web better.

[From http://blog.hubspot.com/%5D

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