Yesterday Google announced that it’s improving its legal citator by changing how it presents citations to legal opinions. From the Google Scholar Blog:
“Now, instead of sorting the citing documents by their prominence, we sort them by the extent of discussion of the cited case. Opinions that discuss the cited case in detail are presented before ones that mention the case briefly. We indicate the extent of discussion visually and indicate opinions that discuss the cited case at length, that discuss it moderately and those that discuss it briefly. Opinions that don’t discuss the cited case are left unmarked. ”
This is a nice enhancement that resembles the depth of treatment stars in Westlaw (now bars in WestlawNext). Google Scholar Legal Opinions and Journals is a great free resource that law students and attorneys should be aware of. While Google hasn’t made many improvements to it over the 2+ years of its existence, it’s always a welcome addition when they do. I hope they’ll continue to make it better.