Much of this lesson is cribbed from William J. Turkel’s (my postdoctoral supervisor and a leading light in this field) guide to “Going Digital.” We’ll work through these links in class on Thursday.

There are five lessons: (1) Basic Contour of some Main Terms; (2) Creating a Top-Notch Research Browser; (3) A Citation Management System; (4) Data Coming to Us; and (5) Web Presence.

Any questions, let me know in class or via e-mail!

Lesson One: Basic Contour of some Main Terms
– how a search engine works – direct link to Google Advanced Search – here is a glossary of commands
– key commands: (a) quotation marks “hi”; (b) remove a search term “-waterloo”; (c) search within a site “ digital”; (d) synonyms “~digital”.

Lesson Two: Creating a Top-Notch Research Browser

Step One: Download Firefox
Firefox is a free, open source web browser that works on Windows, Mac, and Linux systems. It’s not my favourite browser in the world, but it has the largest library of customizable options. We’ll start out with Firefox, but if you’re really committed to the Chrome or Safari browsers we can find ways for you to move forward.

A list of search extensions

Search Extensions

Step Two: Incorporate Search Extensions.
In the upper right corner, you’ll see a search box. For the most part, we usually just use that for Google. But we can add ‘extensions’ to give us direct searches for libraries, the Internet Archive, dictionaries, etc. Let’s add a few.

Internet Archive
Project Gutenberg

(more are available here)

Step Three: Kicking Up Our Web Browsing Experience
Install DeeperWeb

Now restart your browser and try a Google Search. This will help you find what you are looking for quickly. If you were looking for an individual with a common name, you could find what you are looking for fairly quickly.

Step Four: Key Resources (Advanced Searches)

Google Books
Internet Archive
Haithi Trust
Flickr Commons
Wolfram Alpha
Google N-Gram Viewer

Lesson Three: A Citation Management System

Blue book = Save to DB

Blue book = Save to DB

1. Install Zotero
2. Now that we have it installed, let’s try it out. Do a WORLDCAT search from our new extensions and add the book to your database. Do so by clicking on the little book icon that will appear in your search bar.
3. Let’s do the same with a journal article. Let’s go into JSTOR, find something, and make sure we add the PDF to our database.

You can also download STANDALONE ZOTERO if you want to use Safari or Chrome, and add a custom extension.

4. Now let’s get it to talk to Word or OpenOffice. We need to install the relevant plugins. In class, I will show you how to use Zotero to make top-notch citations. This is really helpful for undergraduates especially – you’re taking tons of different classes, so you can easily use this for MLA, Chicago, APA, and other forms of citations.

Lesson Four: Data Coming to Us

You should get into the habit of letting information come to you rather than the other way around. Let’s use Google Reader to collect RSS feeds.

Lesson Five: Web Presence

We will deal with this next class, although it might be worth thinking about a good avatar as we start to build our online presences. If you don’t have one yet, try setting up a Gravatar.