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One of the obvious strengths of CiteSeer is the fact that it provides the number of citations for a particular article along with the aricle itself. This is helpful in that it addresses a question asked earlier in the course about how one knows whether a particular article is worth reading or not. A reasonable metric for this would be the number of citations a particular article has. The more citations then the more likely that the article is a fundamental one to the topic and therefore worth reading. The graph of citation count and other metadata about the article is also very helpful in determining the context.

ACM Digital Library
I have actually made quite a lot of use out of the ACM Digital Library in the past. The primary disadvantage of it is that it is a subscription based service for the full articles. One disadvantage is that the search features and metadata are inferior by comparison to CiteSeer and Google Scholar. Another limitation is that the content is restricted to publications of the ACM. However, the content is of very high quality and many of the foundational papers of computer science can be found here.

Google Scholar
The most important aspect of Google Scholar is that it takes a much more nuanced approach to search than either CiteSeer or ACM Digital Library. Applying Google's powerful search techniques to a literature search can often provide relevant results very quickly. Another handy feature is that along with the search results and citation count, the most common names associated with this query are also provided along the left. This helps a great deal when trying to find who the primary researchers in a field are. The disadvantage is that as a relatively new service they do not yet have comprehensive content for all disciplines. Content is being added as the service develops, but as yet there are journals, etc. that are not included in this service.

Last modified 30 September 2007 at 10:49 am by cobb