Essential Internet Savvy: Tips & Tricks A Presentation for the New Jersey Association of School Librarians Dr. Laura Zieger New Jersey City University October 30, 2006
Intentional Searches • Use specific search engines/ directories
Intentional Searches • Use Boolean Logic • Quotation marks are always recommended
Intentional Searches • View the "hits" that are found on the results page “metamorphosis”
Intentional Searches Search “metamorphosis butterfly”
Anyone can publish to the Web! Use critical viewing skills. Ask these questions.... • Who provided this information? Why? • Is someone trying to sell us a product or point of view? • What kind of site did it come from (com = commercial, gov = government, edu = education, org = nonprofit organization). • How might the source affect the accuracy? Can we believe everything that comes from the government or an educational institution? • What biases are likely held by the providers? • If quotes or data are provided, are they properly referenced? How can we validate the information provided? Can we check the sources? • Does the information represent theory or evidence, fact or fiction, etc.? How do we distinguish between these? • How do the visuals, sound, or animation influence how we interpret the information? Do visuals and text convey the same meaning? Excerpted from: Computers as Mindtools for Schools by David H. Jonassen, (2000).
Who provided this information? The above cartoon by Peter Steiner has been reproduced from page 61 of July 5, 1993 issue of The New Yorker, (Vol.69 (LXIX) no. 20)
Is someone trying to sell us a point of view? www.whitehouse.orgwww.whitehouse.netwww.whitehouse.com
Selling products • http://www.butterflies.com
URLs and Domain Names • URL= Universal Resource Locator. • http://www (Hypertext Transfer Protocol) • https://www (notice the s) tells the browser that the site is secure and information has been encrypted so you can feel safe when entering a credit card number or other private info. • ftp://" tells the browser that there are files, like programs, to be captured and saved on your computer. (File Transfer Protocol) • Domain Names = IP Addressesicann.org = 126.96.36.199
Top-Level Domain Names 1985 • At the end of a domain name is a suffix of two or three letters called a "top level extension". (.com, .net, .mil, .edu) • Some countries have their own suffix, called country code top-level domains such as .ca for Canada. • New suffixes (2000, ICANN-Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers) • .pro – restricted to professionals • .aero – restricted to aviation community • .coop – restricted to co-operative organizations. • .museum – restricted to museums • .job - corporate job openings • .travel - travel-related Web sites • Proposed • .geo, .kid, .mail, etc. • .xxx “voluntary” ICANN revoked approval in 2006
Top-Level Domains • What kind of site did it come from? Unrestricted? • .com = commercial (intended for businesses) • .net = network (used by many- orig. intended for ISPs) • .org = (intended for nonprofit organizations but unrestricted!) • .info = information • .pro = restricted to certified professionals • .biz = restricted to businesses • .name = restricted to individuals • .gov = restricted to US government • .edu = education--restricted to accredited schools • .mil = military- restricted to Dept. of Defense • Most expensive domain name to date: business.com resold for 7.5 million in 1999 according to Guinness World Records
Watch your intercapping • Who Represents = whorepresents.com • Therapist Finder = therapistfinder.com • Experts Exchange = expertsexchange.com • (changed to experts-exchange.com) • Pen Island = penisland.com
Fact or fiction • Is it somebody's personal page? • Read the URL carefully: • Look for a personal name (e.g., jbarker or barker) following a tilde ( ~ ), a percent sign ( % ), or the words "users," "members," or "people." • Is the server a commercial ISP* or other provider mostly of web page hosting (like aol.com or geocities.com
Techniques for Web Evaluation • Look for links that say "About us," "Philosophy," "Background," "Biography," "Who am I," etc. • If you cannot find any links like these, you can often find this kind of information if you Truncate back the URL. http://www.abcteach.com/directory/theme_units/insects/butterflies/ • Look for "last updated"
What Do Others Say? • Find out what other web pages link to this page. • http://www.alexa.com/ • Do a link: search in Google, Yahoo!, or another search engine where this can be done.
Resources • Bibliography on Evaluating Web Information http://www.lib.vt.edu/help/instruct/evaluate/evalbiblio.html • University Libraries at Virginia Polytechnic Institute • Kathy Schrock’s Guide on DiscoverySchool.com • http://school.discovery.com/schrockguide/eval.html • Librarians' Index to the Internet • Search the subject "Evaluation of Internet Resources" in http://lii.org
Further Information… Dr. Z’s Asterism http://lzieger.blogspot.com Email: firstname.lastname@example.org EDTC 621 Using the Internet in Education Discover NJCU website: http://www.njcu.edu/discovernjcu