Search Engines

One topic from this class that future Digital History students should definitely take into consideration would be that of the differences and the plethora of different search engines on the web.

First of all students should consider that there are two general types of "search engines". The first one being just that, a search engine. These types have built in robots or crawlers that are programmed to "look up web pages", "read the pages", and "report their findings directly back to the search engines. The typical popular examples of this are Google, AltaVista, and Inktomi. The difference in these basically is how often they are updated. The most up to date sites usually give back the most current and thorough results.

The next type of search engine that students should be familiar with is the type called the "Web directory." With a Web directory, the databases are built up directly by humans. Typically these types have the humans review the sites submitted to the directory and sort out their relevance. One specific difference between the Web Directory and the Search Engine is that usually the Web Directory lists "web sites" whereas the search engine lists "web pages" from within the web sites. Some popular versions of this type of engine are Yahoo and Gipsy.

Overall the difference and usage of certain types of search engines should help a future Digital History student in the success and future of their college career.

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