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About WebLens and How to Use This Site

The Web is an almost infinite universe of information. Most of the time, however, locating what you need is like finding a needle in a haystack. Not any more! This gateway to thousands of useful Internet research tools and resources was created as a companion resource for Pam Blackstone's newspaper column. The column is no longer published, but we are committed to continuing to make this comprehensive Internet research resource available for your convenience. WebLens features links to thousands of the Net's most popular search engines, directories, metasearch tools, music and image searchers, people finders, company locators, reference tools, job databases, recipe archives, scholarly research resources and more. Please feel free to bookmark this comprehensive collection of Net search tools and come back often.

How to Use This Site

The research tools found on this web site are organized by theme or type of resource. To access them, roll your mouse over the horizontal nav bar at top or choose from the complete list of topics at left. (Note that Javascript must be enabled for full functionality of this site.)

Each link in the navigation bar opens a different collection of research tools. From there, you can click any link to explore and/or compare resources. Most linked sites will open in new windows. Close these extra windows to return to WebLens. Happy hunting and may all your searches be fruitful.

A Word About Advertising

WebLens has always included advertising, and we make no apologies for that. Revenues from advertising cover hosting and domain renewal fees and allow us to continue offering this free resource.

What's Changed

While we have made major changes to the look and feel of WebLens, how the information is organized remains basically the same. There are, however, a few key changes you should know about. Please read on for a summary.

Content Organization

  • Outdated topics have been removed, making the site more compact
  • Sub-topics within many pages have been re-organized to be more intuitive
  • Broken and/or outdated links are still in the process of being cleaned up (big job!)
  • The contents of the Specialized A-M and Specialized N-Z menus are ordered alphabetically
  • Image Search, Music & MP3, and People Finders have been moved to the Specialized menus
  • The Feature Comparison Chart is now under Search Help
  • Non-search topics are now under the Tech Tools menu
  • The site Optimization and Submission resources are found under the Web Design menu

Usability Enhancements

  • The frames are gone! New to WebLens? This JPEG (204 KB) shows how the site used to look
  • Three stylesheets mean the site works well at most resolutions (1280x1024, 1024x768, and 800x600)
  • Link colours are now the default blue and magenta, making it easier to tell where you've been
  • The new two-column layout means less scrolling for you
  • Page contents are organized more intuitively, with better use of headings
  • Screen fonts can be resized by pressing Control plus your mouse wheel or Control plus the + or - key
  • Mouse rollover colour indicates link type: green hilights are internal to WebLens; magenta rollovers indicate linked external sites
  • Can't find what you need? There's a lot here, so a new A-Z index points you to the right information quickly