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More web research tools with real life examples

first_imgAs promised, this week I am coming back to the exploration of web research tools with some real examples for using those tools to research venture capital topics such as venture capital firms, growth equity funding, venture capital advisors.Before you start your ambitious web research undertaking, be aware that you will have to roam far and wide on the Internet and sometimes travel off the beaten path. Basic college skills such as note-taking, summarizing and reference citing will come in handy to keep your burgeoning data trove organized. However, there are awesome tools online to help you do this on the fly. I will just list out 3 that I like the most here: Delicious, Evernote and Diigo.   I will start with Delicious first. This is the grand daddy of online bookmarking tools, and it is a formidable database of great links, an easy to use bookmark organization application and a great way to explore any topics.For example, let’s search links in Delicious that are tagged with “venture”: http://delicious.com/tag/venture. This is a continuously updated streams of web pages tagged with the keyword “venture.” What if we want make it more specific: let’s add another tag “capital” and also a location “Boston”: http://delicious.com/tag/venture+capital+Boston. This is a great list of venture capital funds in Boston area (of course, it is not exhaustive, but this is actually much easier to navigate that the thousands of results that Google gives for the same query “venture capital Boston”.If you have a delicious account, you will be able to organize your bookmarks using tags, and then compare and contrast them with the community database of 5.3 million users and 180 millions bookmarked URLs.Evernote started out as a desktop-based scrapbook application, very much like Microsoft OneNote, but it has since evolved into a full function note taking, web clipping, thoughts organizing and data synchronizing application that has the ability to permeate all aspect of the digital world: your desktop, the Internet, your smart phone etc. For intrepid adventurers in web exploration, Evernote is a godsend!I reserve Diigo for the very end because this is a tool that I use the most. They have made great strides since launching in 2006 and going through 3 versions. To the uninitiated, Diigo is “just another Delicious”, but Diigo really shines in the way it lets people collaborate together in while doing online research, in real time or asynchronously. In Diigo, the online bookmarks are meant to be shared with other users in Diigo, as well as across the Internet through other communication platforms (including Delicious, Twitter etc.), and are really the center of lively discussion.Diigo also acts as a great content recommendation tool, as it is almost like an Amazon.com for online links. From one bookmarked page, the user can explore other bookmarked pages on the same site, explore lists that that page belongs to (and hence seeing similar content previously bookmarked by other members), participate in online discussion groups that grow around that content, and so on.For example, a quick search in diigo for “Venture capital” leads me to an awesome list of venture capital and venture funding related sites created by another user: http://www.diigo.com/list/damniwala/venture. Here is high quality content selected from all over the web, served up for immediate consumption!You can even see all the pages as a slideshow: http://slides.diigo.com/list/damniwala/ventureAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more