March 30, 2006

Scirus Improvements

.: Please welcome Dana Roth as an "official" contributor to STLQ:

  • While I was initially very negative about Scirus, they seem to be adding content, although they are heavily weighted to Medline/PubMed, Science Direct and a few society publishers (e.g. IOP, IUC, Scitation) for their journal sources coverage. They have added the Caltech Collection of Open Digital Archives (Caltech CODA) to their web sources.
  • Scirus provides grouping of results via keywords in context. For example, try 'zzyzx' as a search term. In the right margin there is an option to "Refine your search using these keywords found in the results"
  • Scirus index surpasses 250 million mark

    The Scirus index now contains over 250 million scientifically relevant Web pages. This includes pages found on government sites, academic websites, preprint servers, digital archives, repositories and patent and journal databases ..." For more information about Scirus' content sources" click:

  • Grouping of results per source in Scirus

    Building on its existing feature to view results per general content type (Journal sources, Preferred Web sources and general Web), Scirus now offers the ability to ... ("View all results from...") ... for all Journal and Preferred Web results (including repository search partners and patents). "

    **For example: each Medline/PubMed reference offers the choice "view all ... results from MEDLINE/PubMed"

March 17, 2006

Scirus News Update

.: The Scirus News Update for February 2006 is available, and includes information on the latest release.

October 28, 2005

Scirus to Index CODA: Caltech's Collection of Digital Archives

.: From the Elsevier site:

Amsterdam, October 17, 2005 – Elsevier today announced that its free science-specific search engine, Scirus, is collaborating with the California Institute of Technology to index the Caltech Collection of Digital Archives (CODA), its institutional repository, and to power a search capability on the repository's site. Caltech CODA was launched in 2000 to digitally archive and make freely available Caltech's scholarly output and today it holds close to 4,000 theses, technical reports, preprints, articles, oral histories and conference papers produced by the 1,200 professional staff at Caltech.

Caltech CODA is an archive of valuable information created by faculty and students. The content is made available in an open access repository so that research results are more visible and enhanced discovery is possible.

Continue reading "Scirus to Index CODA: Caltech's Collection of Digital Archives" »

August 2, 2005

Greg Notess on Scholarly Web Searching: Google Scholar and Scirus

:: Greg Notess, librarian at Montana State U and creator of Search Engine Showdown, reviews and compares Google Scholar and Scirus in his latest On The Net column in Online:

Google introduced a brand-new concept with Google Scholar []—specialized search aimed at finding scholarly information on the Web. With an initial focus on research articles from publishers participating in the CrossRef project and several collections of online preprints and other major scholarly sites, Google established a new approach to a broad range of scholarly literature (although its original coverage was stronger in science and technology than in the social sciences). In true Google fashion, the new search tool not only displayed links to individual documents, it also included citation references extracted from other documents using special algorithms developed at Google.

Some librarians decried this poaching of our information space, while Google advocates foresaw Scholar as the first and only source for research information. We have seen this type of rhetoric before. Remember when Google launched Google Answers back in 2002? The ensuing hue and cry bemoaned how this would compete with library reference services. Google Answers continues as a fee service, but it is certainly not a major Google money-maker, nor has it caused the death of library and information services anywhere.

Is Google Scholar destined for a similar fate? Time will tell whether it becomes a major access tool and replaces some of the traditional indexing and abstracting services or ends up as yet another orphaned initiative. In the meantime, it offers certain benefits and uses, as do several other free Web-based scholarly search tools such as Scirus. Unfortunately, none are even close to comprehensive. Each tool covers one segment exclusively or in very different ways.

I am curious to know who is using either of these tools, and to what extent? I ask because I seldom use Google Scholar or Scirus, largely because I work in a library system that offers most of the key subject databases and e-publications needed by its users. I wonder if Google Scholar and Scirus are being used or promoted by librarians working in institutions without access to key dbs and e-resources required by their clientele.