Saturday, March 1, 2008

Rollyo... A Personal Search Engine

Do you have certain sites that you visit often when you’re looking for an idea or some information? Wouldn’t it be convenient to search all of them in one shot?

When I’m creating or modifying a teaching unit, there are a few sites that I like to check to see what they have to say about my topic. With Rollyo ( I can create a personal search engine (a.k.a. a Searchroll) that checks my list of sites. Although I can list up to 25 sites in a Searchroll, Rollyo recommends a list of 5 to 15 sites to work the most efficiently. Rollyo uses Yahoo as their search engine and Feedster to work with RSS results.

I have created two Searchrolls so far… one, a list of some favorite edublogs and the second, a list of some favorite teaching idea sites. If you go to Rollyo, you can find my Searchrolls—Teaching Ideas and My Edublog Search—in the Education category. At the Rollyo home page, click on Explore. Then type schiffbauer as the search keyword and click Go. The two Searchrolls that I have created will be listed. You can click on either one to use it or to edit it for your own use.

If you use the Firefox browser, you can add your Rollyo Searchroll to the Firefox toolbar with just a single click. I did that with mine. (See the diagram below.)

I can also explore, save, and personalize Searchrolls created by others. Once I change a Searchroll, the modified version is saved to my list of Searchrolls.

I can allow my students or colleagues to use a Searchroll I have created. Rollyo can provide a web address by which others can access my Searchroll.

What else can I do with Rollyo? The web site suggests the following…
  • add Rollyo to your Firefox toolbar
  • put a Rollyo Searchbox on your site
  • create Searchrolls with your bookmarks
  • send or directly link to a Searchroll
  • email a Searchroll to a friend or directly link to a Searchroll for bookmarking or use on your site or blog
  • search from any browser with their RollBar Bookmarklet
This is an easy-to-use tool that can help me be more efficient more quickly. How could you use Rollyo to make your searching go better?

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