Thursday, July 15, 2010

Search challenge (Wednesday, July 14, 2010: How to find a list of....

One of the critical steps in sensemaking is often collecting information about a given topic.  The search problem here is that collections on your topic-of-interest often don't exist.

And that's a challenge.

Suppose you're interested in different kinds of flower pollen, or drum and bugle corps in California, or 18th century Spanish missions in the new world.  Whatever the topic, you usually start by collecting and organizing information on that topic.  And, depending on how scholarly (or compulsive!) you are, you might delve into original research (say, travelling to Spain to look in the archives for evidence about those missions)... or you might just be happy with collections that other people have put together.

In any case, that collection phase is an important one.  And it's often the step that stops many people.  Short of laborious work, how can you find 20 different examples of microphotographs of pollen?

While that's an interesting question, that's not the challenge for today.  (For that particular collection, I'd probably use Google Images, or look at the Wikipedia article on pollen.) 

Instead, today's challenge is this:  

Can you find a list of the books for which Howard Rheingold is the author OR co-author?   

You could substitute any other well-known author for Rheingold here, but I want to make the challenge interesting. (Besides, Howard has created an extensive and fascinating oeuvre covering a wide range of topics.  He's one of the few writers I know to have such a broad Dewey Decimal range!)   

And, for simplicity's sake, let's only look for the original English language editions.

1 comment:

  1. Amazon? You do get some foreign language editions, but I'll be surprised if it isn't complete (at least for anything that is still in print or available used)

    I was very surprised that I couldn't find it on his website. Other tech authors I know, this would be the obvious place to do.