So, on a lighter note, I recently got sick & tired of running site: search after site: -wiki search in Google, and began looking for some way to automate it.
I discovered that one can make a 'custom' Google search: https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Google_Co-op It allows one essentially to tell Google to increase the score of any hits in certain domains, and blacklist other domains. It has a number of neat features - for example, I can tell it to blacklist any domain on https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Wikipedia:Mirrors_and_forks/All . You might think that a parameter like '-wiki' or '-wikipedia' would do the same thing, but alas! In particular, I've created a CSE focused on anime & manga topics: http://www.google.com/cse/home?cx=009114923999563836576:1eorkzz2gp4 I started with all the links listed in https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Wikipedia:WikiProject_Anime_and_manga/Online_reliable_sources and then began running searches on random topics and pruning based on that - chucking sites into the blacklist sinbin, or finding good sites omitted from the list and adding them to the whitelist. At last count, I had 200 sites on the nice list and 311 on the naughty list (but this counts things like the Mirrors page as a single link, though they ban dozens or hundreds of sites). The results are *much* better. To take my most recent use, finding material on [[Amanchu!]] for its AFD (https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Wikipedia:Articles_for_deletion/Amanchu!), compare the regular Google search: http://www.google.com/search?q=amanchu with the CSE search: htp://www.google.com/cse?cx=009114923999563836576%3A1eorkzz2gp4&q=amanchu All the blogs & scanlations & forums in the former are great for someone who just wants to read _Amanchu!_, but for a Wikipedian? It's terrible. Notice that the ANN launch article, which is apparently the most substantive English coverage in a RS*, is the first hit in the CSE but the fifth in the regular Google search, and you can keep scrolling down and find mostly chaff. And the weekly sales ranking that puts _Amanchu!_ at #8 nationally, that shows up in the first page in the CSE? I've no idea where it is in the regular Google hits. Or take a critical classic: _The Wings of Honneamise_ (https://secure.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/wiki/Royal_Space_Force:_The_Wings_of_Honn%C3%AAamise). Google: http://www.google.com/search?q=wings%20of%20honneamise CSE: http://www.google.com/cse?cx=009114923999563836576%3A1eorkzz2gp4&q=wings+of+honneamise Google has on its first page WP, IMDb, Amazon, video links, Tucows (!), ads, and just 2 reviews a Wikipedian might find useful. CSE has 9 or 10 good review sources from respectable publications like Ex.org or the New York Times, and even the questionable hits like RottenTomatoes have their good points - RT would lead one to the famous critic Roger Ebert's *very* flattering review of _Wings of Honneamise_. And it'll take you straight to Ebert's review on page 2, whereas in regular Google search, you have to go to page 7 or 8. Further examples can be multiplied, but I hope this shows that CSEs can be very useful for finding online sources; I'm sure it would work as well for other subject-areas! (And since I can't let recent events go, I'll mar my little essay with a final remark: *this* is the sort of thing that will lessen issues like BLPs - not fanaticism like "Caedite eos! Novit enim Dominus qui sunt eius".) * Unsurprising, really. _Amanchu!_ is Japanese only and likely will stay that way for years; even the anime media can be very language-parochial. -- gwern _______________________________________________ WikiEN-l mailing list WikiENfirstname.lastname@example.org To unsubscribe from this mailing list, visit: https://lists.wikimedia.org/mailman/listinfo/wikien-l