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September 27, 2004

Issue No. 66

Table of Contents

Highlights and Features

Grokker at Stanford
CourseWork-Fall 2004
File-Sharing-Consequences
File-Sharing Myths
File-Sharing Resources
IT Open House October 28
Tech Help for Faculty
Essential SU Software
Desktop Computer Security
Security Self-Help Tool
Wireless Access-SU Visitors
SULAIR Home Page Update
SU Course Support Web Site copy

Library Resources

SULAIR Image Collections
SKIL Tutorial Enhanced
Scholars Workshops for Fall
Social Science Data
Literary Studies Database
New Lane Library Web Site
Firing Line TV Program
ArcGIS 9 Available
SSRC Past Events Online
BIOSIS Changes
HighWire Press-New Journals
EuroNews Web Site

Computing News

Accessible Web Pages
AFS Disk Quota Increased
Online Lecture Assessment
Teaching with Technology
Resources for SU Webmasters
ATS Program-New Projects
ATL Project Showcase
Spam Deletion Tool
ITSS Training Services
Training Registration
HelpSU Streamlined
New Webmail Is Here
Printing in Sweet Hall
Sweet Hall Consulting
Mac OS X Migration
PeopleSoft System Upgraded
Bookstore Computer Store
Courselets for SU Community
Sundial Calendar Changes
TeamSpace in Meyer Library
Meyer Classrooms
Meyer Tech Desk Update
Technology Help on Web

Grokker Redefines Research at Stanford

The challenge is to encourage broader, deeper exploration and easier management of thousands of search results from a variety of online data and information sources and to offer it in a way that will help Stanford students, faculty and staff research and find truly relevant and valuable information that leads to discovery, innovation, and breakthrough thinking.

To address this challenge, Stanford and Groxis are cooperating in an innovative partnership to provide single source access to the Web, multiple search engines (Google, Yahoo!, MSN, Teoma and others), Socrates, and a variety of external content sources and databases.

The result is the Stanford Grokker, which analyzes search results from relevant databases, Socrates , Stanford's online catalog, and the Internet, then groups them visually in an interactive map (picture). Instead of page after page of records, Grokker generates a concise, organized, easy to read, visual map for research, exploration and knowledge sharing.

What Is Grokker and How Is It Different?
Grokker is the next generation research and discovery tool that is rapidly being adopted by professional researchers, students, and educators because it enhances the value of information retrieved from search engines, content sources, and databases. Grokker visually displays (maps) thousands of search results in intuitively organized groupings that you can explore, filter and organize to your preferences. (No lists!)

Simply throw away what you don't need, rearrange the rest the way you want it, then save the map or share it. It's like having thousands of bookmarks in a single file that can be shared with peers, students, and staff. Grokker lets you explore and discover when you're unsure about what you're looking for or find what you need more quickly when you do.

University Librarian Michael Keller notes that:

"Grokker is an innovative and promising tool to help users harvest the Internet and various other information resources. I expect that the Stanford Community - particularly the student community - will find Stanford Grokker to be a welcome addition to the array of research tools available."

So, When Should I Grok Instead of Search?

Think of Grokker as a search engine companion and powerful research tool. A search engine alone is great when you know what you are looking for, but is less effective when you need to search for information in the process of researching and exploring a topic.

When you don't necessarily know what you are looking for and you want to go beyond the obvious to explore and discover, an unending, unorganized list of results falls short and Grokker's visually organized approach works best.

Use Grokker when you want to immerse yourself in information about a subject. One glance at Grokker's results and you'll quickly gain an understanding of the mapped information and see how it relates to the topic in question. Grokker helps you see how information fits together in a contextual picture that facilitates opportunity recognition, increases productivity and improves the way we manage and process information. With Grokker, you'll spend less time searching through lists of results and more time discovering and thinking.

When Can I Start Using Grokker?
Grokker is available now in the residence computer clusters and on computers in Green and Meyer Libraries. Stanford faculty, staff, and students can download Stanford Grokker for use on their personal computers by going to:

http://grokker.stanford.edu/

There you can access Grokker and find instructions on the use of this powerful research tool.

To learn more about Grokker now, visit:

http://www.grokker.com/

Also, try your hand at the Grokker puzzles at:

http://www.yougrok.com/