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Making the Most of Web 2.0: General Research Guide: Introduction

Web 2.0 delivers credible, current, and exciting information. Learn how to put Web 2.0 resources to work for you.

Web 2.0 and You

Why Use Web 2.0

With the right Web 2.0 applications, you can....

  • Find readable articles full of detailed information by credible authors.

  • Read articles by the best and brightest minds.

  • Explore just about any research topic.

  • Keep up to date with the latest news from your favorite publication or in your area of interest.

The best of Web 2.0 offers...

  • Currency -- RSS feeds, Google News, and some blogs track today's events.

  • Credibility -- Blogs at newspaper and magazine web sites as well as those created by Guides at have editors and a publication's reputation behind them, ensuring quality.

  • Authority --  Web 2.0 authors include Nobel and Pulitzer Prize winners, scientists, and mathematicians.

Web 2.0 has its limits.

  • Even blog search engines can't really find blog entries on particular detailed subjects.

  • Older information (more than a year old) often disappears.

  • Blogs and columns have a way of vanishing as commentators switch publications and publications redesign their web sites.

  • Most blogs and columns, while credible, are definitely not scholarly journal articles.

The Best and the Brightest

The Best and the Brightest

These are blogs by famous authors, intellectuals, scientists, and more....

Paul Krugman is a Nobel Prize winning economist who writes for the
New York Times

Thomas Friedman won a Pulitzer prize for his writing and also writes for the
New York Times

Robert Reich was Presdient Clinton's Secretary of Labor and teaches at Berkeley. He has his own blog.

Malcolmn Gladwell is a best selling author and widely read columnist in the New Yorker.

Room for Debate offers multiple, short, opinion pieces by experts on a single topic. Topics have included whether one should bribe children to behave, whether high school should last six years, and whether Al-Shabab is a threat to the United States, among many others. NOTE: The New York Times has a EIGHT article per month limit on free access.

Steven Strogatz is an expert in network science, teaches applied mathematics at Cornell University,
. Several years ago, he wrote a now-archived column/blog for the New York Times. NOTE: The New York Times has a EIGHT article per month limit on free access.

When Web 2.0 is NOT Enough

When Web 2.0 is Not enough

If you have in depth research or need information on a very specific  topic or if you need statistical data or scholarly journal articles, blogs and news tracking sites are often not enough. Please try some of the resources listed here.

Topic Tree


English and Communication -- Argument Papers (General Research Guide has suggestions, links to resources, and help for those who can't find topics. Also try The Topic Tree for fresh and timely topic ideas and Choosing a Topic, a tutorial about searching for exploration (requires Shockwave/Flash).

If you need specific information and want to find it on the open web, try Great Web Sites which lists news, statistical, science, and humanities sites as well as meta-sites that lead to others.

If you want a large number of credible articles or scholarly information for a major research project, NOTHING replaces GALILEO, the library's collection of databases that lead to full text articles in both scholarly journals and general magazines.