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Internet Search Engines
Instructions:
Read below about how different kinds of Internet search engines are set up.
Make a choice:
Use the most appropriate kind for your Internet research needs.
Directory
Definition: a site that organizes and lists Web sites by categories, subcategories, etc., using real people to assign the categories
Characteristics: selective; may have fewer sites; sites may be more relevant
Note:  directories are selective in what sites they give you
Recommendations:  use when subject is broad or when keywords are ambiguous
Examples:             Open Directory Project www.dmoz.org
  WWW Virtual Library vlib.org
  BUBL Link http://bubl.ac.uk/link

 

Search Engines
Definition: site that uses a special piece of software, like a "spider," crawls the web and mechanically indexes the sites it comes to
Characteristics: more sites; sites may be less relevant
Note: There are differences in search engines regarding how they decide which sites are most relevant to list for the user
Cautions:  They do not categorize sites by content; they can be slow to update their indexes; they can include inappropriate sites, such as money making come-ons or pornography
Recommendations: Use with narrower topics and keywords that are not ambiguous
Examples:                AltaVista www.altavista.com
  Bing www.bing.com
  Google www.google.com
  HotBot www.hotbot.com
  Lycos  www.lycos.com

   

Metasearch Engines
Definition: a search engine that searches other search engines
Characteristics: searches a larger portion of the Web; searches cannot be as focused or sophisticated
Note: each metasearch engine searches a different set of search engines
Recommendations: use when subject is obscure or when you need to cover as much of the Web as possible; do not use when you need to use advanced search features
Examples:                Dogpile www.dogpile.com
  MetaCrawler www.metacrawler.com
  Search www.search.com

 

Alternative Search Engines

 

Definition: search engines that are set up differently
Note: each one has different, unique characteristics
Examples:             Ask www.ask.com

It has catalogued millions of the most common questions, then locates sites that are most likely to answer those questions. 
When you input a question, it lists those that most closely match yours.

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