Thursday, March 19, 2009

POSTING 3:The Similarities and Differences between the Search Engines like Google Scholar, Yahoo!, and Eric Digest

Hello, everyone, I'm Rowena. Today I'm going to blog on the various search engines like Google Scholar,, Yahoo! and Eric Digest. So, do sit back, relax and enjoy reading my blog!

Before I proceed, I would like to wish a good day to Dr. Zaini.
This third posting is to blog on, the similarities and differences between the search engines like Google Scholar, Yahoo!, and Eric Digest. but, before we get any further, we should first know what are the different search engines all about. Well, it is as follows:

Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ: YAHOO) is an American public corporation with headquarters in Sunnyvale, California, (in Silicon Valley), and provides Internet services worldwide. The company is perhaps best known for its web portal, search engine, Yahoo! Directory, Yahoo! Mail, news, and social media websites and services. Yahoo! was founded by Jerry Yang and David Filo in January 1994 and was incorporated on March 1, 1995.On January 13, 2009, Yahoo appointed Carol Bartz, former executive chairman of Autodesk, as its new chief executive officer and a member of the board of directors.According to Web traffic analysis companies (including, comScore,Alexa Internet,Netcraft,and Nielsen Ratings,the domain attracted at least 1.575 billion visitors annually by 2008. The global network of Yahoo! websites receives 3.4 billion page views per day on average as of October 2007. It is the second most visited website in the U.S., and in the world. is a "smart" metasearch engine — every time you type in a query Mamma simultaneously searches a variety of engines, directories, and deep content sites, properly formats the words and syntax for each, compiles their results in a virtual database, eliminates duplicates, and displays them in a uniform manner according to relevance. It's like using multiple search engines, all at the same time. Created in 1996 as a master's thesis, helped to introduce metasearch to the Internet as one of the first of its kind. Due to its quality results, and the benefits of metasearch, Mamma grew rapidly through word of mouth, and quickly became an established search engine on the Internet.'s ability to gather the best search results available from top search sources and to provide useful tools to its users has resulted in its receiving multiple Honourable Mentions in the Best Metasearch category in the annual Search Engine Watch Awards.

3.Eric digest
The Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), sponsored by the Institute of Education Sciences (IES) of the U.S. Department of Education, produces a large international database of journal and non-journal education literature. The ERIC online system provides the public with a centralized ERIC Web site for searching the ERIC bibliographic database as well as for submitting materials so they can be considered for inclusion in the database. ERIC provides access to bibliographic records of journal and non-journal literature indexed from 1966 to the present. ERIC also contains a growing collection of full-text materials in Adobe PDF format including the legacy ERIC Digests.The ERIC collection includes bibliographic records (citations, abstracts, and other pertinent data) for more than 1.2 million items indexed since 1966, including: journal articles, books, research syntheses, conference papers, technical reports, policy papers, and other education-related materials Prior to January 2004, the ERIC network consisted of sixteen subject-specific clearinghouses, adjunct and affiliate clearinghouses, and a number of support components. Each of the sixteen clearinghouses recommended materials for inclusion in the ERIC database, but also maintained additional extensive resources available by contacting the clearinghouse. As of January 2004, the ERIC clearinghouses were closed as part of reorganization by ERIC's parent agency, the U.S. Department of Education. Some clearinghouses have transferred their operations to other institutions; others have shut down entirely.

4.Google Scholar
Google Scholar is a freely-accessible Web search engine that indexes the full text of scholarly literature across an array of publishing formats and disciplines. Released in beta in November 2004, the Google Scholar index includes most peer-reviewed online journals of the world's largest scientific publishers. It is similar in function to the freely available Scirus from Elsevier, CiteSeer, and getCITED. It is also similar to the subscription-based tools, Elsevier's Scopus and Thomson ISI's Web of Science. Google Scholar nonetheless claims to cover more websites, journal sources and language. Its advertising slogan — "Stand on the shoulders of giants" — is a nod to the scholars who have contributed to their fields over the centuries, providing the foundation for new intellectual achievements.
Google Scholar arose out of discussion between Alex Verstak and Anurag Acharya, both of whom were then working on building Google's main web index. In 2006, in response to release of Microsoft's Windows Live Academic Search, a potential competitor for Google Scholar, a citation importing feature was implemented using bibliography managers (such as RefWorks,RefMan, EndNote, and BibTeX). Similar features are also part of other search engines, such as CiteSeer and Scirus. In 2007, Acharya announced that Google Scholar had started a program to digitize and host journal articles in agreement with their publishers; an effort separate from Google Book Search, whose scans of older journals do not include the metadata required for identifying specific articles in specific issues.After recognizing all the four search engines, now it's time to move on to the next question that is to find out their similarities and differences.

My Take on the Similarities and Differences between the Four Search Engines:

In my opinion, the similarities between, Google Scholar, and Eric digest is that they all are search engines that provide me with adequate information. For instance, when searching of information on the net, I have the opportunity to use these search engines to find various materials on different or similar topics at the same time. In addition, with the different materials found from different sources, I can use it to compare and contrast in order to finally pick the best. These four search engines provide me with information that is relevant and to the point. These four search engines also have opened many doors in the global village that we live in today, just by a click of the mouse, we can be transported to worlds of information.

However, there are differences too between these four search engines. For example,
in comparison with Google Scholar and, each of these sites serve similar functions and share many comparable characteristics. However, despite these similarities, Google is a better example of a well designed and useful Web site. I say this because of it's interface, layout, and design of the pages. Google offers a very clean and simplistic interface, whereas Yahoo! is busy and cluttered. Simplicity is one of the best estimators of whether a Web site is aesthetically pleasing, and a simple design should always be used to avoid complexity and confusion to the user. When a user is not bombarded with excessive text and images, they will feel more at ease and comfortable while using your Web site. Ultimately, a simplified interface means that the Web site will be accessible to all types of people with different skill levels, thus increasing the potential for a significant user return.

The differences between and Eric Digest on the other hand are that, the information in, and Eric digest is more towards academic purposes. These two Web pages play an important and useful role in the educational field. Students and teachers alike can make full use of the information provided at these search engines in order to ensure the learning or teaching process become more interesting and active. is a search engine that is nicknamed "The Mother of All Search Engines" searches Web sites, MP3 files, images, video, and news. It also Offers affiliates and partner programs. Its display is also simple and people can easily find information on it as it is not confusing to the searcher. In addition, compare to Eric Digest, we can get more hits here. Eric Digest on the other hand, is a site that provides full-text access to thousands of ERIC Digests in many education areas including teaching, learning, special education and home schooling. But, in my opnion, Eric Digest is more confusing than all the other search engines. I find it very detailed and hard to grasp. If I were to choose among the search engines, I would not search for information via Eric Digest unless it has something that is academically related.

Apart form that, the differences between and and Google Scholar and Eric Digest is that in and, they classify their web pages in an organized set of categories such as images, video, jobs, news and so on. This makes the searching task become easy and efficient. Besides that, classification will also create a neat look for the web page. But in contrast to Google Scholar and Eric Digest, their web pages only provide the search text. This might cause some information seekers to not have any idea for their searching purposes. Especially for first time users of the Internet. Thus, causing them to face difficulties while searching for the information they need. Comparing with the and, the method they used can help the beginner to use the search engines.

To make a long story short, I think that although the four different search engines have their own pro’s and cons, we have the opportunity to utilize them in every way possible. In the end of the day, all the information we get will be different and that’s when the magic starts, whereby we take what is needed and discard what we don’t need. In the end, we only get the best from the four very reliable sources.

Lastly, please sit back and enjoy the Video on how to use Google Scholar which I got from YouTube


  1. That ERIC Digests is not the real deal - it's somebody's Google AdSense spoof site. You need to look at instead.

  2. The reliability and credibility of the Alexa Rankings have often been subject to differences. There are opinions that the Alexa ranking is far more credible and true for the sites below 10,0000 than that for the ones above it. Another factor that proves to be a major drawback of the Alexa rankings is that the rankings are governed by the Alexa toolbar and the Alexa toolbar users community. All the browser types are not taken into account as far as the rankings are concerned. As for example the Alexa rankings does not work in Windows Vista even though the latter has a huge user base and is highly popular.

  3. Hey Martin, thanks so much for your comments on my blog. But, what I don't quite get is that, why are you talking about Alexa toolbar when my posting is on search engines? I mean, is there a link between what you are trying to say and search engines?