From Little League to the pro arena, free-for-alls generally do not turn out well. However, in the information world, free-for-alls have a much better connotation. This month's articles from the October issues of Computers in Libraries, The CyberSkeptic's Guide to Internet Research, and Searcher each pitch a different facet of an Internet-based free-for-all. If you are looking for an alternative to traditional OPAC backup methods then read "Fac-Back-OPAC: An Open Source Interface to Your Library System," by Mike Beccaria and Dan Scott. If you are tired of shaking off bad results when searching for STM portals, you will want to catch up with a new resource discussed in "On the Road to Scitopia" by Nick Tomaiuolo. A work-in-progress, Scitopia permits free searching of its database.
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