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Four Seriously Cool Information Resources
As a librarian, researcher and frequent blogger, I’m constantly coming across incredibly useful online information resources that are most effectively searched using their own site search tools, rather than relying on general-purpose engines to surface their valuable content. I plan to start writing about these on a regular, ongoing basis, using a bullet-point format that highlights the most useful features of each resource, rather than doing in-depth reviews.
Without further ado, here are the first four (of many more to come).
- Cost: free
- In three words, amazing, important, essential
- With a few exceptions just about every program that have aired on C-SPAN, C-SPAN 2, C-SPAN3
- More than 170,000 hours of content, back to 1987
- Advanced search interface
- Important to remember that C-SPAN carries more than what goes on in the Senate and House of Representatives
- Hours and hours of author interviews, political rallies, interviews with newsmakers and journalists and much more
- Most programs are full text searchable using mechanically generated transcripts
- People search allows you to quickly see if a person has appeared on the network and then link directly to the program(s)
- Example: Larry Page (he’s appeared on C-SPAN Twice)
- Many programs are embeddable
- Most programs appear in the archive within a day or two (if not sooner) of airing.
- The C-SPAN Video Library won a prestigious Peabody Award in June
- Cost: free
- Officially launched last week
- One search, centralized access to multiple digitized historical map collections
- About 60,000 maps available today, with more than 120,000 maps by end of 2012
- Keyword search, focus by date using slider, search by map
- Material included so far:
- A Vision of Britain through Time, Historical Map Library
- British Library, Map Library
- David Rumsey Map Collection
- Moravian Library, Mollova mapová sbírka
- Cost: free to search; fee for institutions to subscribe
- Archive-It is a fee-based service from the Internet Archive that works with non-profits, schools, governments and others to crawl and archive sites and pages they specify
- Many of the collections are available to all
- Close to 1,700 collections currently available
- Example: Archive of NASA Social Media
- Collections are updated regularly with new material
- Unlike the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, Archive-It collections are keyword searchable
- Cost: free
- Provided by Duke University Libraries
- More than 30,000 digitized images, with search/browse capability
- Most images are of outdoor signs from between 1930s and 1980s
- Advanced interface allows you to search by company, product and date
Some opinions expressed in this article may be those of a guest author and not necessarily Search Engine Land. Staff authors are listed here.