COMPARATIVE DATABASE REVIEW:

TITLE: PubCrawler, Biomail, TheScientificWorld

URL: http://www.gen.tcd.ie/pubcrawler/

http://berlioz.informatics.sunysb.edu/cgi-bin/biomail/users.pl

http://www.thescientificworld.com/pup/create.asp

DATE REVIEWED: May 20, 2001

DESCRIPTION:

PubCrawler

" PubCrawler is an automated update alerting service for users of NCBI’s PubMed (literature) and GenBank (DNA sequence) databases. PubCrawler carries out personalized searches at NCBI at regular intervals (e.g. daily), keep track of what records have been seen previously, and produces a WWW page listing the latest hits that match the user’s interests."

Biomail

"BioMail is a program that simplifies and automates searching for biological and medical literature. BioMail searches PubMed, the largest publically available online database for biomedical journals, using the search terms. BioMail then e-mails the results weekly, biweekly or monthly as chosen."

TheScientificWorld

"The sciBASE of TheScientificWorld gives access to the world's premier database of scientific, technical and medical research literature. Rapid searching and article location, and article verification with major abstracting services prior to single-article ordering."

STRENGTHS:

PubCrawler

Can search both PubMed (literature) and GenBank (DNA sequence). A new sequence may appear in GenBank months before the paper describing it is published.

Many search terms and fields for building and editing search profiles in PubCrawler Configurator which allows users to customize their searches in many ways.

Freely available for stand-alone installation on computer.

Biomail simple and direct, free, easy to collect the reference of interest to personal treasury.

TheScientificWorld

Immediate direct digital delivery of articles published by the partner publishers.

WEAKNESSES:

PubCrawler

You have to organize the reference of interest into a place yourself every time.

Biomail

You have to have a good knowledge of how the search syntax work to get a good search result since it has a only one search query entry box.

TheScientificWorld

Comparing with the other two, it didn’t use the PubMed format which is user-friendly. Complicated, instruction and help are not so clear, mixed with other commercial functions.

 

COMPREHENSIVENESS:

PubCrawler Good

Biomail OK

TheScientificWorld OK

TIMELINESS:

PubCrawler

Get the most recent information

Biomail

Get the most recent information

TheScientificWorld

Get the most recent information


EASE OF USE:

PubCrawler easy to use with the PubCrawler configurator.

Biomail simple and direct, easiest to use with foolproof help.

TheScientificWorld Not easy to use. Search choices is not so clear. Since you can not access even free on-line articles immediately it is frustrating sometimes.


RESPONSIVENESS:

PubCrawler quick

Biomail quick

TheScientificWorld a little bit slower


SIMILAR OF RELATED SITES:

PubCrawler list other free alerting system

Peer Bork's lab at EMBL (BLAST sequence searches against DNA and protein databases)

Swiss-Shop at Expasy (BLAST sequence and keyword searches against SwissProt updates)

Current Medline Scanner (searches PubMed weekly and sends links to new documents by e-mail)

BioMail (searches PubMed weekly and sends new documents by e-mail)

Biomail no link to other sites

TheScientificWorld no link to other sites


OVER ALL RATING: 1=BAD 5=EXCELLENT

PubCrawler

5. I like the PubCrawler configurator and the Pubmed format.

Biomail

4. Its simplicity really saves time for the busy people.

TheScientificWorld

2. At first, it is not free, even for JBC. Only when we really want to buy some article we can quickly get the digital article delivery through this site. Or I can not see why to use this website in the presence of other free and good one.