DOAB titles so far for 2022, for the arts and humanities

The DOAB appears to show a total of 11 arts and humanities books in 2022. Here are the workings behind the initial figure.

The DOAB’s sidebar facets were used for the July test, rather than a crude keyword search.

a) Arts facet. Non-keyword search: Date Issued: [2020 TO 2023] × Subject: The arts

Two hits. No books listed as “2022”.

b) Humanities facet. Non-keyword search: Date Issued: [2020 TO 2023] × Subject: Humanities

This gave 198 titles. This result-set was small enough for me to manually skim through picking out suitable “2022” titles on new browser tabs, while excluding single chapters and the many mis-hits (e.g. “Dental Education”, General Education, Business, Health titles). I came up with a list of 11 book titles so far in 2022, and which fit inside what I consider to be the core “arts & humanities” fold:

Verwaltete Vielfalt: Die königlichen Tafelgüter in Polen-Litauen, 1697–1763.

Tracing the Atom: Nuclear Legacies in Russia and Central Asia.

Realities, Challenges, Visions? Towards a New Foreign Cultural and Educational Policy.

Trends on Educational Gamification: Challenges and Learning Opportunities.

Game-Based Learning, Gamification in Education and Serious Games.

Post-Truth Imaginations: New Starting Points for Critique of Politics and Technoscience.

Islam and the Trajectory of Globalization: Rational Idealism and the Structure of World History.

After the Text: Byzantine Enquiries in Honor of Margaret Mullett.

In Contempt: Defending Free Speech, Defeating HUAC (a new history of the U.S. McCarthy trials).

Horos: Ancient Boundaries and the Ecology of Stone.

Monstrous Liminality: Or, The Uncanny Strangers of Secularized Modernity.


In contrast a simple search for keyword humanities gives many mis-hits, not least among the vast number of medical books. e.g. DOAB highlighting…

humans. In this context, humanized mice transplanted with functional human cells.

The same results are had when using either humanities or “humanities” as a keyword.


But it turns out that searching either way is misleading. The two apparently top-level facets of ‘arts’ and ‘humanities’ are not giving the full story, since they are not acting as top-level “buckets”. To get the actual number for 2022 in English one must undertake the following…

1. Blank search. Publication Type: book × Date Issued: [2020 TO 2023] ×

2. Sort Date Issued: 2022 × Language: English × Publication Type: book ×

3. Now remove the wider [2020 TO 2023] facet, having now got access to the pure 2022 facet.

There are then 2,638 titles accessible in 2022 so far. This is ‘all books’ in 2022, and not all arts and humanities.

Drilling down from that set to a clean arts and humanities sub-set appears to be impossible, as things stand. There appears to be almost as may subject sub-facets as there are books…

One can’t use the .CSV export of results, as that appears to be capped at 500 rows. And the general RSS ‘feed for new titles’ appears limited to just four titles.

My guess would be that perhaps 300+ of the 2,638 titles for 2022 fall into what I would call “arts and humanities”, but one can’t get a clean de-duplicated list for such. If there is some arcane way to do it, then please let me know how.

HTTP Downloader

I went in search of a good freeware downloader software, because the Web browser add-on DownThemAll! had failed me. It had worked well in the past, but I discovered it has a limit on import. Adding a list of links to 268 .JP2 files was beyond its capabilities. Even cutting the .txt list of files into two halves didn’t help.

So, Windows freeware ‘to the rescue’. After trying a few, HTTP Downloader was the choice. It may look old-school but the author Eric Kutcher last updated it in July 2022. Genuine freeware, and it’s 64-bit.

Very simple to use. Give it access to the Web. Copy your one-per-line list of links to the clipboard. Paste in. It starts rolling through a list of multiple downloads, eight at a time. That’s it.

The software had no problem with a big download run, 3Gb in total.

Also interesting, from the same author, is his 2018 Google Search Results Filter. For Firefox based browsers only, so presumably also including Pale Moon.

Google is set to freeze all CSEs

Google Custom Search Engines (CSEs) have a new tablet-centric Control Panel. It’s not good news. As usual with such tea-boy tinkering, it’s a big step backwards and not just in the user interface. It removes absolutely vital features needed to manage a CSE of any size.

There are two major problems with the new Control Panel.

1. A key and vital feature of the old Panel was the ability to quickly check (‘Filter’) what you had in your URL list, before adding a new URL. You’d paste or type in part of an URL, and instantly see if you already have it in the list.

This vital feature has been removed in the new Panel. There is no longer any ‘Filter’ option, anywhere.

2. I’ve also looked all over the new Control Panel, and it appears that Google have shut down the ability to export your URL list to an .XML file. This is what you had before…

This is another vital feature, which is now nowhere to be found anywhere in the new Panel.

Regrettably, the notice today is that: “The legacy Control Panel is still available but will be removed in the future.”

Thus, back up your CSE’s .XML annotations (i.e. the URL list) now, before it’s too late.

Without the vital “Filter” option, having a local .XML of the URLs will be the only way to quickly check what’s in your CSE. Indeed, it will be the only way to see the whole of what is in your CSE at all.

With the removal of these two vital features, Google is effectively set to “freeze” all larger Google CSEs. Because old URLs in a large CSE will no longer be able to be found and updated. They can’t be re-found for fixing, even if you know they’re in there (because you have the .XML spreadsheet with the full list). Thus, your CSE can no longer be maintained over time.

Remove the grey ‘Opera Account’ icon

Here’s how to remove the pointless grey ‘Opera Account’ icon. It has been added to a key area of the UI in the latest Opera browser, right next to Downloads.

1. In the browser’s address-bar type or paste opera://flags and then press Enter.

2. You will be taken to the “Experimental page”. There you click in the “Search Flags” search-box, and type account popup to get this…

3. “Disable” the Account icon and panel, and then re-launch Opera. The icon should now be gone.

Blog search tools for Google

Google Search tends to dislike blogs, for some reason I’ve never quite been able to fathom. I’ve often idly thought that the dislike might be due to the common ‘sidebar link-lists’ with dead links. But surely Google’s bots have the ability to detect and ignore such sidebars when indexing? Unless, for speed/cost, that’s impossible and the bots just rip out raw text regardless of where it is on the page?

Anyway, ResearchBuzz Search Gizmos is a new suite of tools for working with Google Search and blogs, in the form of scripted workarounds. Including…

* Blog Shovel, for decades-back searches across blogging services which are still live.

* Back That Ask Up, which lets you remove the last x days or weeks from your Google News results. Doesn’t appear to work all that well. But perhaps most useful for its live working demo of sophisticated URL chaining in Google Search, effectively creating a mini Google CSE…

keyword (inurl:2022) (site:wordpress.com | site:squarespace.com | site:wix.com | site:blogger.com | site:tumblr.com | site:typepad.com)

Though if you’re going to do a lot of that then you’d be better off making a CSE, to which you could also add selected self-hosted blogs.

Fixing Opera’s problem with Google Search + spellcheck

PROBLEM: The spellchecker in the Opera Web browser now only partly works in the Google Search box. Opera’s spellchecker underlines mis-spelled words, but can no longer offer any suggestions and make replacements. It works perfectly in other search-engines and on WordPress posts etc. But not in the Google Search box, for some unknown reason. Tests show that uBlock Origin is not preventing the spellcheck from working properly.

I tried a great many possible solutions, seeking a simple elegant right-click option that didn’t try to do 20 others things or send the word off to Whereizitagain to be ‘checked’. And which could work in Google Search.

SOLUTION: The Windows desktop offline solution I found was a combination of the old abandonware Spell Magic and the mouse-gesture freeware StrokesPlus (old version).

Spell Magic needs: General Options | Silent Spell Check Mode | On. While StrokesPlus needs: Preferences: Allow Left Click | On.

Then you set up your StokesPlus ‘S’ mouse-gesture with this mini-script…

USAGE: Once this is set up the user places their mouse-cursor anywhere over the mis-spelled word in the Google Search box. Then they right-click and draw the ‘S’ mouse-gesture with StrokesPlus. The gesture completes and the script then automatically runs the cursor back to the starting point of the gesture, and there does a double left-click. The word is thus selected and highlighted, and the script next calls Spell Magic into action on it.

The user manually chooses a replacement word, and then Spell Magic is able to make the replacement in the Google Search box. Spell Magic then exits to the Windows System Tray, ready for future action on some another word.

Also works in all other Windows-centric software, though sadly not on typed text in Photoshop. Spell Magic dictionaries are in the .ADM format and many are freely available from Addictive Software. One final thing to note is that Spell Magic will not launch if it thinks the word is correct.

On rare occasions Spell Magic will repeatedly fail to capture the word for checking. Exiting and re-starting the software seems to cure the problem.

OAmg tested

A quick test of the new OAmg academic search tool with keywords: Tolkien earendel. Four results.

1. “Authoring the Century: J.R.R. Tolkien, the Great War and Modernism.”

Book review, though initially looks like it might be the book itself. The Google Scholar pass-through button takes me to a result that then leads to a paywall. The English Society there invites me to purchase the item for $40. However OAmg’s PaperPanda button for the item takes me to Sci-hub, which instantly gives me a pirated copy of a review in the Oxford University journal English, 2010.

2. “Le livre des contes perdus.”

French translation of the Book of Lost Tales Vol 1. DOI button gives “error DOI not found”, as do all DOI links on OAmg, currently. “Download via Google” button is currently a template search unrelated to the search result. The Google Scholar button passes the title through to Scholar, which in this case is not that useful. You’re not going to find full-text for the French translation of the Book of Lost Tales via Scholar. There’s no PaperPanda link leading to Libgen.

3. “De Cynewulf a Tolkien: Earendel y las imagenes de la luz salvadora”.

2011 paper from an Argentine journal. DOI button gives “error DOI not found”, as before. “Download via Google” button is kaput, as before, though theoretically “a title as a phrase” pass-through to a Google search would be useful. The Google Scholar pass-through does get me the full-text link, on a university repository.

4. Tarscay’s “Chaoskampf , Salvation, and Dragons: Archetypes in Tolkien’s Earendel” which I know is free at Mythlore.

There’s a huge abstract on the OAmg page (each article/item gets one page), which is useful. DOI button gives “error DOI not found”, as before. The pass-through to Google Scholar gets the link to the full-text.


Not bad on basic numbers, then, on this micro-test. A 50% full-text delivery rate, and 75% if you count the pirated item. Other quick searches suggest that PaperPanda links (I’d never heard of them before) are all over the results, and the ones I tested all went to Sci-hub.

A large amount of open papers that ‘should be there’ for this Tolkien earendel search are not there. OAmg only claim a bare 200 million in total, via combining the outputs of all the usual API-offering aggregators.

A search for Mongolian folk song suggests the semantics is good, but also seems to indicate that the Chinese state aggregator is slipping in somehow, though CNKI or similar are not listed on the list of data sources used.

Still, full marks for chutzpah and energy. It feels like it could shape up to be a useful discovery tool, in the sense of “now I know this exists” rather than “now I know this exists, and I just downloaded the full-text”. But they have to: i) make the DOI pass-through work, which given the flakiness of DOIs is probably easier said than done; ii) hope that Google Search doesn’t throw a fit and block them when the title pass-throughs actually start working; and iii) throw Sci-hub piracy overboard (which seems as simple as un-plugging PaperPanda).

I’d say the value here lies in the possibility of timeliness and time-saving. Offer a $20-a-year custom monitoring service for new items of interest that happen to pop up across the 24 or so databases.