Google Scholar

Union catalogs from Hungary, Iceland, Israel, Portugal, Sweden, and Switzerland are now visible with links to bibliographic information and items via the Google Scholar interface. Try searching for information science and find links for some of the hits to Library Search (Sweden), if you’re coming from Swedish domain.

If, for example, you’re coming from the Swedish domain but want to check items from other union catalogs, just go to Scholar Preferences and search for the country to configure the union catalog you want. Then save your preferences.

Make the same search on information science and you will get the link Find in RERO if you have chosen Schweiz as in my example.

Read the announcement Global searches go to local libraries at Google official blog 2/20/2006.

We made a freetext search on headache in Pubmed with limits to entrez date 60 days which returned 442 records. We checked the availability of the PubMed records (in descending order) in Google Scholar until we reached the possible breakpoint and then checked the EDAT which is the date and time when the record was added to PubMed.

Google Scholar has indexed 1 of 5 articles published 2005/12/29 09:00 GMT-8. The screenshot below shows both the Google Scholar reference and a clipping from part of the PubMed reference:

From 2005/12/28 09:00 and descending one following day everything was indexed, with the exception of one article.

PMID 16375021 from 2005/12/27 doesn’t exist in Google Scholar, but the rest of the articles from the same date exist.

From 2005/12/31 09:00 and ascending at least one following date nothing was indexed by Google Scholar (2005/12/30 had no records in this search).

This means thet Google Scholar, at least in this single test 2006-02-01 11:00 GMT+1, has an update gap of more than one month. I did a similar undocumented test in 2005-10-07 which showed a latest update in Google Scholar 2005-08-17. To discover if the updates of PubMed via Google Scholar is regular or unregular requires regular tests during a longer time period.

Google Scholar went international on Jan 11th when they included the Scandinavian languages Finnish, Swedish, Danish and Norweigan. Gary Price wrote 11 Jan in Search Engine Watch Blog that there are just two languages included but when I check all four languages are covered. Check the following screenshots.

Searching kirjasto on

Searching semantiska webben on

Searching uddannelse on

Searching sykepleiere on

When you check the screenshot for Swedish Google Scholar (, you can see the first hit is an article about the semantic web (swe. semantiska webben). I wrote the article for a computer magazine called Datormagazin. It’s not scientific in any aspect and of course not peer-reviewed but it has been cited for example by the master thesis (swe. magisterexamensuppsats) Ontologier i kunskapsorganisation by Irene Granström. Swedish master theses are not considered to be scientific. This is an example of the broad aspect of indexing that for example Peter Jacso criticized in his evaluations of Google Scholar.

The relevance order of the assessed and non-assessed research, low graduate papers , preprint articles and popular science articles etc. is done by the ranking algorithm, but the width of Google Scholar compared to Scopus and Web of Science could be useful if the user’s have the skills to do content assessments.

I also sent some questions to Anurag Acharya:

Lars: Could you give an example on Swedish publishers you work with? (In this case I wanted to know if Google Scolar does cooperate with Swedish publishers publishing works in Swedish.)

Anurag: We are not sharing a list of publishers at this time.

Lars: Did you have any Swedishfluent people you worked with to implement Swedish GS?

Anurag: No. Note however that scholarly articles are remarkably similar in
structure across many languages and most of the issues are common.

Lars: How do you restrict a search to Swedish, Finnish, Danish or Norwegian documents?

Anurag: This is not possible at this time. We may add this in the future.

Lars: Now when Swedish characters å, ä, ö, is implemented will you connect different spellings in author names to same search? Like söderström gives hits also on soederstroem also? It’s not done with rantapää.

Anurag: We have implemented several cases of diacritical normalization. Would appreciate suggestions for others that we may have missed.

Some further questions have not been answered. I will publish them here if I get them answered.

A suprised researcher at my university told my colleague some days ago when searching her name in Google Scholar: I didn’t write that article! Her name is Berit Ardlin and her christian name initials BI. Look at this screenshot from Google Scholar.

When you click the link you get the article, but with other authors. Check the reference in Pubmed for example. So how come? Google Scholar indexes the fulltext of articles (some from the proprietary web, some from the open web) up to a certain limit of KB. The fulltext is often visible in the search results because your search keywords exists in the fulltext. In this case BI Ardlin and the other authors M Braem, B Van Meerbeek, JE Dahl etc just should exist in the fulltext. But checking the fulltext of the article doesn’t give any hits on Ardlin. So where do these author names come from? From other fulltext? Someone with a clue or is it just Anurag Acharya at Google Scholar who has got the answer?

At least the dots before the “false” author names and the dots after (in front of the journal name) indicate it’s from some other text.
This is just an example on how the search results visualization, due to full-text indexing ambitions, sometimes makes it very confusing in Google Scholar.

In issue 3/4, volume 10, 2005 of Internet Reference Services Quarterly there are some articles about Google Scholar which I added to the page References to literature. The whole issue is co-published in the book Libraries and Google, Edited by William Miller and Rita M. Pellen, Haworth Press, 2005.

With the polysearch engine maintained by Peter Jacso, professor at the University of Hawaii, it is possible to do some evaluations to check whether the Google Scholar finds more or fewer hits than the native search engine of the publisher. The publishers you can compare is Annual reviews, Blackwell, Institute of Physics, Nature publ. group, Wiley Interscience. You can perform fulltext search or title search. I would suggest that you use title search because Google Scholar does not index the entire fulltext, just to a certain limit of KB. Which Anurag Acharya of Google Scholar told me in an interview made in September 2005 in Copenhagen.

As Jacso instructs don’t use the search operators beside of proximity search with ” “. I tried some searches which gave me the following results:

Annual Reviews (Native) 2 hits
Annual Reviews (Google Scholar) 6 hits

“frontotemporal dementia”
Blackwell (Native) 24 hits
Blackwell (Google Scholar) 18 hits
Check a screenshot from the search.

“fuzzy logic”
Institute of physics (Native) 8 hits
Institute of Physics (Google Scholar) 7 hits
Nature (Native) 45 hits
Nature (Google Scholar) 23 hits

“semantic web ”
Wiley interscience (Native) 8 hits
Wiley interscience (Google Scholar) 13 hits

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