Search the Net for your guide

23rd June 1995 at 01:00
Users of the Internet must be very literate judging by the number of books and magazines on the shelves. Some American books call out to be weighed rather than read. Education on the Internet (A Hands-on Book of Ideas, Resources, Projects and Advice), by Jill H Ellsworth (Pounds 22.95, Sams Publishing ISBN 0 672 30595 X), is a 600-page introduction. It claims to show how to use the Internet for teaching and learning. It doesn't, but it does give an overview of resources.

More modest, much shorter, more effective and much cheaper is the UK School Internet Primer by Mailer and Bruce (Koeksuster Publications, Pounds 7. 50, ISBN 0 9524072 05). This was the first in the UK and is useful for new users, if a little short on the curriculum.

Internet for Dummies, by Baroudi and Levine (Pounds 14.99, IDG Books Worldwide, ISBN 1 56884 024 1) is part of a series which promises a very simple introduction but does not achieve that. It is, however, a very thorough, if slightly confusing, guide. Probably a book to read second, not first.

Last but not least is the NCET's Highways for Learning (Pounds 7.50, ISBN 1 853793183) which is aimed directly at schools).

One of the most frustrating things is to be told that some of the best guides to the Internet are actually on the Internet either as freeware or shareware. My first response was: if I could find them then I wouldn't need them. Nevertheless, you can get someone else to download them. Don't print them out; some are very long. Try getting into the digital age by working on screen. If you put the text into a word processor you can search it easily. All the following can be found at the this site: http:www.rpi.eduInternetGuidesdecemjicmcinternet-navigating-guides. htn ip> Electronic Frontier Foundation Guide, by Adam Geffen, used to be called The Big Dummy's Guide. Its new title is more respectable and more in keeping with its contents. The Foundation is one of the guardians of the Internet.

The On-line World, by Odd de Presno, a shareware title, is very comprehensive and has more on education than most of the others.

The Internet Companion (A beginner's guide), by Tracey LaQuey started life as a paper book and is a very well written and well structured guide The best way of keeping up to date is with paper magazines. You will find Internet (Pounds 2.50), Internet and Comms Today (Pounds 2.95) and .net (Pounds 2.99). The most readable is .net. For information on the location of sites on the World Wide Web, Internet is the one to go for.

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