THE NEWSLETTER OF THE WISCONSIN ASSOCIATION OF LEGAL ADMINISTRATORS WINTER ISSUE 2004-05
IN THIS ISSUE Beyond Google -
Beyond Goggle . . . . . .1 Alternate Search Engines Enhance Research
President’s Message . . .2 By Beverly Butula from Davis &Kuelthau.
United We Stand
Community Challenge 3
he majority of us in the
legal field utilize the Google is wonderful and is
Education News . . . . .4
Internet on a daily basis. this writer’s first stop for
Fall Workshop . . . . .5-7 Email access and research via the
Web is commonplace. Research most general searches.
Project . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 conducted could range from However, individuals who
locating a phone number, to
Donation to FALA’s obtaining a government form, to research for a living take
Silent Auction . . . . . . .9
gathering company data, to finding it a step further and run
a recent decision. If the searcher is
not sure of the URL, a list of
their query in more
Project . . . . . . . . . . . . .9
possible Web pages is usually than one search engine.
Special Thanks . . . . . .9 retrieved through a search engine. it to a specific source. For example,
the searcher can just run the query
Region 3 Conference .10 Studies have shown that Google the perfect solution for obtaining in PubMed, FirstGov, CNN, or
(www.google.com) is the most quick general information. EBay.
Region 3 News . . . . .11
commonly used search engine. However, when conducting more
Reading, Writing, Google is wonderful and is this in-depth research, the first step is Teoma (www.teoma.gov)
‘Rithmetic . . . . . . . . .13 writer’s first stop for most general to determine if the Web is the best
searches. However, individuals resource. Consider standard book
Vendor Spotlight . . . .14
who research for a living take it a research or an online subscription
Treasurer’s Report . . .15 step further and run their query in based product such as Westlaw,
more than one search engine. Lexis, or LOISLAW. If the decision
Not-so-harmless error 17 Why? Because the results from is to proceed via the Web, it may
each engine, either the ranking prove worthwhile to run the query
To Sponsor or Not to through several search tools.
Sponsor . . . . . . . . . . .18
and/or actual sites, will be quite
different in each. Don’t put all
So, the next time you are
Membership News . . .20 your eggs in one basket, so to
conducting legal or detailed
speak. Utilizing more than one
New Member Profile .21 research online, try some of the
search engine can “fill in coverage
sites provided below. This is only a Teoma’s index of sites is not the
gaps” and put the currency of the
When Disaster small sampling of options size of Google, but still produces a
Strikes . . . . . . . . . . . .23 indexing into perspective.
available. For a more quality results list. According to its
Caught on the ‘Net . .25 Using other search engines, virtual comprehensive listing, check out “About” page, Teoma utilizes an
libraries, and portals in addition to, either Search Engine Watch approach called “subject specific
State Bar Relations . .26 or instead of, Google can enhance (www.searchenginewatch.com) or popularity” to rank the results.
the user’s end results. Remember, Search Engine Showdown
The Last Word . . . . .28
no search engine will retrieve (www.searchengineshowdown.com). This engine offers two special
everything. In fact, most only features - “Refine” and
scratch the surface. Choosing the SEARCH ENGINES: “Resources.” “Refine” suggests
right site to begin a project will Vivisimo (www.vivisimo.com) terms, which link to a more
depend on the type of information specific outcome list, as a means to
This tool is a “clustering engine.” focus the search. “Resources” are
needed and what the user already
It automatically categorizes the links to other related topics and
knows about the subject.
results, refining the search, and Web pages which may be of
Popping key terms into Google is offers a very clean interface. User’s interest.
can search the entire Web or limit
(continued on page 24 ➤)
(continued from page 1)
Gigablast (www.gigablast.com) comprehensive gateway to everything
government. Searching this site will lead
the user to information from all levels of
federal and state government. FirstGov is a
portal with almost endless links to
agencies, statistics, forms, laws &
regulations, business resources and tribal
American Law Sources Online (ALSO)
searches from its homepage. A favorite of
some professional researchers, it supports
Boolean operators and permits the user to
The interface is very simple and it has no “search within the results” to refine the hit
advertisements. Its index is extremely list.
small compared to the major players and it
even offers links to several other engines. OTHER SEARCHING TOOLS:
Basically, this site promotes the use of FirstGov (www.firstgov.gov)
alternative engines. However, it produces
good results. A
Gigablast supports Boolean operators and
offers a special feature called “GigaBits”. The homepage describes this site as a
GigaBits (found at the top of the results “comprehensive, uniform, and useful
page) are other terms that may assist in compilation of links to freely accessible
refining the initial search. on-line sources of law for the US and
Canada.” In other words, it does not
AllTheWeb (www.alltheweb.com) provide the actual information, but rather,
This search engine, powered by Yahoo, links to the places the user needs to go.
offers Web, picture, news, video and audio Google powers the searching and the site
(continued on page 27 ➤)
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24 WALA CLASS ACTION • Winter, 2004-05
(continued from page 24)
is regularly updated. the hit list is usually quite small but
relevant. Fee based resources are clearly
Federal and state legal resources are marked.
presented in a very clean format. Test it
out by choosing “Wisconsin”. Find access _________________________________
to court decisions, legislation, local rules,
administrative information plus much This article originally appeared in the
more. There is also a comprehensive Wisconsin Law Journal. “Beyond Google -
listing of law reviews, uniform laws, and Alternate Search Engines Enhance
Amicus Curiae briefs. Research" July 21, 2004, 12A.
InfoMine (http://infomine.ucr.edu/) Bev Butula is a reference librarian at
Davis & Kuelthau in Milwaukee. She is
Created by librarians, it is a great place President-Elect of the Law Librarian
for academic type research. Its powerful Association of Wisconsin.
Economics, Ejournals, Government Info,
search engine supports truncation, as well
Maps & GIS, and SocSci/Humanities.
as, Boolean and proximity operators.
Because the results are “expert selected”
Subject areas include: Business &
professionals have been
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WALA CLASS ACTION • Winter, 2004-05 27