There are a number of excellent federated search presentations, freely available for downloading, if you know where to find them. The list that follows is my attempt to identify a number of presentations that I consider to be outstanding, either because they provide an excellent overview of federated search, or because they cover some aspect of the industry exceptionally well. Is the list exhaustive? Of course, not. I think of it as a start and I would love to hear your comments about which ones should be added to the list. You should be aware that I favor recent presentations as things change quickly in this industry.

Most of the presentations are in PowerPoint, a few are PDF files, and a couple are in web-based embedded slide show applications. One is a video!

I have included very terse comments to give you a sense of what each presentation is about. I hope you find this list useful. Many thanks to Terry Colby; he manages sales for Deep Web Technologies and provided me with a long list of presentations, most of which I used in my list.

Here is the list, in alphabetical order by title.

  1. Decisions, Decisions: What to Consider When Selecting and Implementing a Federated Search Product. Nina McHale Asst., Professor/Web Librarian, Auraria Library CLiC Spring Workshops, Grand Junction, 26 February 2008.

    Why federated search, state of the technology, selecting, implementing, and launching a solution.

  2. Electronic resource management (ERMS), OpenURL and Cross-Search Implementation. Claire Moran & Ros Pan, UCD Library.

    Experiences with 2007 pilot using Serials Solutions’ ERMS, Article Linker, and Central Search.

  3. Falling Down the Portal: Adventures in Federated Metasearch Technology at California State University Northridge. LITA National Forum, San Jose, California, October 1, 2005. Lynn Lampert, Coordinator of Instruction & Information Literacy, Metalib Implementation Task Force Member at California State University Northridge, Katherine Strober Dabbour, Library Assessment Coordinator and HSI Grant Project Director at California State University, Northridge.

    Concludes with “including impact of portal/federated searching technology on information literacy programs as well as the future of resource.” Awesome illustrations!

  4. Federated Search. April Ens, Rowena Koh, Jovy Rosario, Desy Wahyuni, Suher Zaher-Mazawi. LIBR 557, November 2007.

    Good definition of federated search, comparison to metasearch, issues and challenges with federated search, and lots of screenshots of a number of federated search products.

  5. Federated Search – a cure, a band-aid, or salt in the wound. Julie Hartigan, Ph.D., Chief Technology Officer, Teradata Government Systems.

    Great overview of federated search with a focus on a number of issues with the technology.

  6. Federated Search Engines, The Unified Search Environment: The Western Health Experience, 2006. Vanessa Craven.

    Good presentation of a number of issues pertaining to federated search technology.

  7. Federated Search Implementation Challenges. Judi Briden, Digital Librarian for Public Services, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester.

    A tour of a federated search implementation at University of Rochester.

  8. Federated Searching Feedback: From Usability Testing & Focus Groups. Sarah C. Williams, Angela Bonnell, Milner Library, Illinois State University.

    Lots of good detail about the process of ease of use testing at one University. Usability testing results are not super common.

  9. Federated Searching Feedback: Walking the Talk?. Jill Hurst-Wahl, Hurst Associates, Ltd. Oct. 29, 2007.

    Federated search benefits and shortcomings, advice for libraries and for federated search vendors, trends in the industry.

  10. Federated Searching: Implementation Challenges. October 14, 2005, Gretchen Hanson, MLS, NFAIS Humanities Round Table IV.

    Raises important questions federated search users and vendors need to address.

  11. Federated Searching: The ABC’s of HSE, XML, & Z39.50. Harry Samuels, Product Manager Linking & Searching, August 27, 2004, Endeavor Information Systems Incorporated.

    A great overview of the protocols central to federated search.

  12. The Good, The Bad and the Ugly of Federated Searching. Doris Helfer, Chair, Library Technical Services, and Science Librarian, CSU Northridge, Jina Wakimoto, Faculty Director for Cataloging and Metadata Services Dept., University of Colorado at Boulder.

    Shares a broad range of experiences with federated search: implementation, issues, bad problems, hopeful signs, user assessment findings and suggestions,

  13. Implementing Shareable Metadata Practices in a Diverse University Environment. Jenn Riley, Metadata Librarian, Indiana University Digital Library Program.

    Vision on creating “many robust discovery environments that can easily exchange diverse metadata.”

  14. Inter-Search: Integrating federated searching in an Inter-library Loan system. Dr. Edmund Balnaves, Prosentient Systems.

    More than ILL. Fairly detailed presentation on search integration.

  15. Issues and Opportunities Associated with Federated Searching. Grace Baysinger, Head Librarian & Bibliographer, Swain Chemistry & Chemical Engineering Library, Stanford University Libraries and Academic Information Resources (SULAIR)

    Describes a project at Stanford to develop federated search prototypes.

  16. Metasearch. Ray Denenberg, Library of Congress, March 3, 2006, Integration Workshop, KB, Netherlands.

    Focuses on NISO’s metasearch initiative.

  17. Not All Federated Search Engines are Created Equal. Abe Lederman, President and CTO, Deep Web Technologies, Inc. Next Generation Library Technologies, May 7, 2008

    Presents a number of topics: federated search overview, benefits, quality of search results, user interface, results delivery, selecting a vendor, future of the industry.

  18. Recent Trends in Federated Search: A Snapshot of the Landscape Today. Frank Cervone, PhD, Assistant University Librarian for Information Technology, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL, and Jeff Wisniewski, MLS, Web Services Librarian, University Library System, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA.

    Many screenshots from a number of federated search applications and trend information.

  19. Searching the Deep Web. US Department of Energy, Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

    This is a fun professionally-produced video that introduces the surface web and the deep web and explains how federated search tools mine the deep web for scientific information.

  20. The Stage is Set for the Future. CENDI, September 2007, Walter Warnick, Director, Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Department of Energy.

    How federated search within the federal government finds scholarly content that the web crawlers can’t find.

  21. Testing Federated Search Activated Resources in a Multi-Campus Installation: What Can Go Wrong. Kirsten Leonard, Electronic Resources/Government Documents Librarian, Indiana University Kokomo Library.

    Discussion of communication difficulties, customization, testing, and recommendations from Kokomo Library’s experience implementing a federated search application.

If I’ve missed your favorite presentation, please tell me about it.

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