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A Useful Resource

I Google a lot. I mean a lot , too. A great deal of my day job, as well as my rescue work and my various responsibilities with the ASSA, not to mention sailing, involves doing web research. Quite often, that research is oriented towards finding products at the best prices (or just finding them at all!).

One resource that I’ve used when looking for "consumer products", as I call them (as opposed to specializes marine or electronic products) is a web site called When I first heard about (and blogged about) this site, it was less powerful than it is now.

For example, if you’re looking for products for your dog, your cat, your fish, your gerbil, or your snake , ShopWiki’s Pets pages has some pretty surprising results. I’ve just learned that they it actively seeks out every store on the Internet in a way similar to Googles technique, by crawling the web. By contrast, you’ve probably used other shopping sites that only show results from stores that have paid for placement .

Now, I’m sure that some of you already know what a "wiki" is, but some of you might not know. The word is derived from the Hawai’an word "wikiwiki" meaning "hurry". It has become a good web tool for collaborative development of information. Wikipedia is a well-known example. Well, if you check out ShopWiki’s Dog Care Guide , you’ll see in the upper left part of the screen a row of terms that includes the word "Edit". If you’re a registered ShopWiki user, that link gives you the ability to correct incorrect information in the Guide, add new information to the Guide, or add commentary to the information already there! This, in my opinion, makes this resource even more valuable, because it allows the user community to enhance the site beyond the capabilities of automatic web-crawling programs.

I just did a few searches for products that Sheltie Rescue Mall carries, and didn’t find anything, so this is an opportunity for me to edit one or more of the pages to which the Dog Care Guide links and perhaps get some business steered our way!

Anyway, check ‘em out. Maybe you’ll find this a useful site and maybe you won’t. But my writing this blog earned Sheltie Rescue of Utah a couple of bucks, which is always a welcome opportunity!

On this day..

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