Saturday, November 14, 2009

23 Things #12

#12 of the 23 Things is: roll your own search tool with Rollyo. According to, "Rollyo offers the ability to search the content of a list of specified websites, allowing you to narrow down the results to pages from websites that you already know and trust."
This is the perfect tool for a reference librarian (especially one working with students who need reputable online resources) or virtual reference librarians. A searchroll allows reference librarians to ensure they will get reputable results when searching because the sites searched are chosen beforehand (rolled into a search tool, so to speak). This means less time wasted sifting through the junk Google or another general search engine can bring.

I love the concept of Rollyo. I can envision creating a searchroll for all types of subjects (business reference, government documents, et cetera). I created a searchroll for medical reference (you can view it here at:

I think it might be worth my time, in the future, to create smaller searchrolls based on more specific topics (i.e. a searchroll just for consumer health questions, one for questions from students needing to conduct research in the medical field,et cetera). Nonetheless, this still beats searching millions of sites, since the maximum number of sites that you can add to one searchroll is 25. However, while I love the concept of the site, I kept encountering messages about server problems. I hope that was a fluke because I want to create more searchrolls in the future.

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