Google scholar, and the recent quiet release of google citations suddenly puts all peer reviewed publications on a more equal footing, its a real boost for emerging disciplines like sports engineering.
Google scholar and google citations does what ISI Thompson does, but includes all peer reviewed publications it can find. This includes the usual suspects like Elsevier and other publishing house journals, with and without impact factors, as well as quite a few that aren't with the major publishing houses. This includes peer reviewed books too. These kinds of metrics are important to the minders of those doing the writing and increasing numbers of people turning to citations in google rather than just the ISI.
Gone are the days of going to the library to find articles, heck even with online catalogs most are opting to use the convenience of google. The canny now use google scholar to helps sort the wheat from the chaff.
With most sports engineering journals and related publications yet to receive a ranking factor, and the ISEA conference tradition of being published in book form ( and more recently as an Elsivier publication), finally all papers in the discipline, together with their citation information is now aggregated and attributable to authors. This includes not only the International Sports Engineering conferences but also the Asia Pacific Congress of Sports Technology (the unofficial satellite conference) as well as the annual Japan Sports engineering conference (which is just as large as the other two)
So whats the big deal, well the continued development of the discipline requires the advances to be visible and easily find able, google scholar and citations can really help here. For continued development of the disciplines these measures can really help. This metrics for publications improve grant success, promotion prospects of academics doing the research and the standing of the disciple. Successful academics bring bodies of expertise, themed investigation and relevance for industry. in time these researchers will grow into major stakeholders in academia and also ensure the continued growth of sports engineering programmes for training people to work in a growing industry.
From a personal point of view I gave it a try and was pleased to see most of what I have written appear, and a few that I had forgotten about as well. With any luck it'll bring a few more citations, so if you see something you like, please give it a mention in your next publication ;)
Clearly I'm no Einstein (http://scholar.google.com/citations?user=qc6CJjYAAAAJ&hl=en ) but my citations are at least climbing ;)