Search 2.0 – What’s Next?

first_img8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting emre sokullu 1 Image SearchImage Search has been around for a very long time, but to be frank it’s still veryprimitive. What most image search engines do is just look for text around images andexamine the image tags. Riya was the first to introduce advanced face recognitiontechnologies in image search. This obviously requires a lot of computing power and justbecause of this, Riya’s weekly burnrate is supposedly over $100K. Co-founded by web 1.0veteran Munjal Shah and face recognition gurus Burak Gokturk and Azhar Khan, Riya is nowentering a whole new space – “search by likeness” with This may come in veryhandy, for example when you try to find a watch that is similar to the one you have adigital photo of. That’s why Riya is expected to make partnership deals with, or getacquired by, e-commerce companies like Amazon and eBay. It’s worth noting that Riya wasonce in acquisition negotiations with Google, but this never happened – and Google endedup acquiring another face recognition company, Neven Vision. So we can conclude thatGoogle is pursuing this technology very closely!Approach Enhancements (Vertical Search)Vertical search is a relatively new discipline in search. Basically, vertical engineslook up a very limited subset of the internet – so they are more efficient than genericsearch engines. Because their search area is not so broad, they can adapt themselves forthe specific needs and common points of their area of focus. We won’t go in too muchdetail about vertical search engines, as it has already been covered in a recentarticle in Read/WriteWeb. But we can categorize the major vertical engines this way:Jobs:, (India), (Canada), (Hong Kong)Travel:,, Mobissimo.comHealth:,,,,,,, Google HealthClassifieds:, Oodle.comBlogs: Technorati, Bloglines, Blogger Search, Sphere, FeedsterSource Code:, Krugle, Google CodeConclusionThe innovation in search does not stop and there’s much to look forward to in thesearch space. What’s more, Google and Yahoo search APIs and the open source Nutch andDMOZ projects allow anyone to try out new ideas. Nutch, supported by Yahoo and shielded underApache SoftwareFoundation, is providing a free global search engine. DMOZ gives you a very large open source web directory editedby volunteers. Google will have a hard time competing not only its big adversaries like Microsoft,Yahoo and Ask – but also the ambitious startups that are opening new dimensions andbringing forth new approaches. We will probably hear of acquisitions in this space aswell. We may not have covered all the promising new search offerings here, so please let usknow your feedback in the comments below. Also let us know which of the above approachessounds the most promising to you – and why. Written by Emre Sokullu and edited by RichardMacManusYou may feel relatively satisfied with the current search offerings of Google, Yahoo,Ask and MSN. Search today is undoubtedly much better than what it was in the second halfof the 1990’s. But Internet search is still in its infancy and there’s much room forimprovement. Moreover, the super high valuation of Google on NASDAQ pushes investors andresearchers to find better search solutions – to be The Next Big Thing. And thesewannabes are not only working on discovering better indexing techniques, they’reexploring new horizons like vertical engines, meaning-based search, intent-driven search,new clustering methods, and much more. In this post, we look into latest trends in thesearch industry. We have positioned the latest search trends into 3 main categories:UI EnhancementsTechnology EnhancementsApproach Enhancements (Vertical Engines)UI EnhancementsSnap Snap promises a betterinterface for search, using the latest advancements in browsers and AJAX technology.Although there were earlier, similar implementations, preview powered search isperhaps the biggest innovation of Snap. With Snap’s preview powered search, you don’tnecessarily need to visit the site to see if it satisfies your needs – you can see adynamically loaded screenshot in the right side of your window. According to a Microsoft study, usersspend 11 minutes on a typical search – so potentially Snap can radically shorten thistime. Another benefit is that it allows you browse the search results with a few keystrokes, which is another big usability enhancement. However it’s worth noting that Snapis slow to process searches as a result, because there’s too much Javascript and it’s tooheavy for most modern browsers and hardware. Also, from a technology point of view, Snapdoesn’t have much to offer – it uses Ask’s existing technology. However they haveintroduced a power of masses approach with options for “This page is Junk” and“This page is Perfect”. Snap’s real time query recommendation is also a little similar to an idea once testedat Google Labs. All in all, Snap doesn’t bring anything new to the table, but it’s a goodmashup of some of the innovative ideas in search that we’ve seen in the last fewmonths.SearchMash SearchMash is actually aGoogle site, to test their latest search innovations. SearchMash follows the basic Googleprinciple – it’s cutting-edge, but still plain and simple. When you do a typical websearch, you also see image, blog, video and Wikipedia results in the right side of thescreen. And there’s absolutely no noticeable speed loss, thanks to AJAX. Basically it isa shortcut to reach all the information you need. The best innovation of SearchMash is perhaps the “More web results” bar. I stronglyrecommend Google find a way to implement it into their default engine immediately. Itmakes it much easier to browse the search results. When you need more information, simplyclick on “More web results” and new results appear at the bottom – enabling you tocontinue scrolling down on the same page, instead of opening a new page. SearchMash alsoallows you to give feedback about the results; this may be a sign of the introduction ofpower of masses into Google Search. All in all, SearchMash shows that while Google continues to keep itself simple, italso has absolutely no intention of giving way on the innovation front to upcomers. Allof the new features in SearchMash are discussed on their About, the new internetinitiative of Microsoft, had many innovative ideas at the beginning. However as Vista’sofficial release date gets closer, it has become a much more traditional searchengine. Besides the technology advances in their algorithms, which Microsoft hopeswill enable it to compete with Google, there are/were many UI enhancements as well. Thereused to be, for example, an infinite scrollbar in – but this seems to have beenremoved for the final public release. Most innovations in the image search interface have been kept though – the tieredzooming feature is the most blatant one. Live’s Image Search offers seamless userexperience enhancements. The infinite scrollbar functionality fits very well and savesyou from the hassle of clicking and waiting. And Scratchpad functionality allows you topick your favourites and compare them smoothly. Overall we can conclude that Live’s interface, when compared to old MSN and Microsoftsites, got more simple and Google-like. Technology AdvancementsSearch forMeaning by Hakia Hakia’s motto is “Search forMeaning”. Founded by seasoned nuclear scientist Riza Berkan, Hakia has raised more than $30M so far, mostly from European private investors. With Hakia youdon’t search keywords, instead you directly ask questions to the search engine. Hakiamakes deep semantic analysis on the pages they crawl. It introduces a new mosaic-likeindexing method called QDEX (Query Detection and Extraction).Despite all these nice promises, currently Hakia does not always return the correctresults. However they’re still in public alpha release and the company is set to debutits full operations in Jan, 2007. After this date, we will have a better chance to judgeHakia’s capabilities. Note that Hakia works on top of Microsoft technologies.Also see Read/WriteWeb’srecent post reviewing Hakia.Clustered Search of Vivisimo and Ask Neither Vivisimo nor Ask are new companies. Both offer clustered search, which meansfragmenting the results of your query so that users can see related terms and go deeperor broader in their data mining. Vivisimo was the first to offer it and it’s very usefulin cases where you are researching a topic that you’re completely new to. Ask’s approachis less dense than Vivisimo’s and is somehow similar to Live’s related results feature.But as stated above, clustered search is probably not something you’ll need all the time– it’s more a side feature that may be helpful in some cases. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img Tags:#search#web Read/WriteWeb profiledAsk last month.Intent-Driven Search by Yahoo! This is a brilliant idea.Yahoo’s research project Mindset brings you results according toyour search purposes. For instance, when you enter “Rolex Watches” in the search box, youmay be willing to buy a Rolex Watch or make an encyclopedic research about the company.Yahoo’s intent-driven search allows you to specify your intent and get the most relevantresults. Note that intent-driven search is still in a very early phase, but it’s very promisingfor mainstream users.Google’s Ori AlonIn April this year, Google bought a patented technology that allows them to showrelated terms after your query. For example, if you search information on the War ofIndependence, this technology gives you a list of related words – like Etzel, Palmach,Ben-Gurion. The patent was taken by an Israeli phD studying in Australia. Google has notreleased this feature yet on Google or SearchMash, but it is expected to be shown soon.Also, it is rumored that Microsoft and Yahoo were also after this patent, but Google wonthe and Power of Masses You may ask, what is doing in between all thesesearch sites – isn’t it just a bookmarking system? Well, the answer is both yes and no.While it’s true that it’s a bookmarking site, Yahoo probably didn’t buy them just forbookmarking. Actually is also a great tool that empowers the search resultsof any search engine. Because when you bookmark a site, this indicates the site is auseful resource – so its “pagerank” should be increased. In other words, canactually be used as a search engine, fueled by the power of masses principle. is not alone in this – Wink and Snap are also trying to use the power of massesin their search offerings. Supposedly, Google also uses some sort of power of masses with their PersonalizedSearch and Google Toolbar offerings.NLP (Natural Language Processing) powered Powerset While still in stealth mode,Powerset has already raised $12.5M in pre-money valuation from several venture capital companies and angelinvestors like Reid Hoffman, Luke Nosek and early Googlers Aydin Senkut and Zain Khan.The difference between Powerset and the traditional search engines is that while typicalsearch engines like Google and Yahoo don’t take into account stopwords (by, after, the,etc), stopwords are a very important part of the engine for Powerset. Why? BecausePowerset relies on a semantic capability that can be triggered by using these stopwords.So while the “book by children” and “book for children” queries return exactly the sameresults in Google, Powerset evaluates them separately and somehow cares about yourstopwords as well.Personalized Search Palo Alto based Collarity is a very new companyentering into the personalized search area. The question that pushed them into thischallenge is: “Why are your search results exactly the same as the next person’s searchresults?” This is not a very new idea – Google (with its Kaltix acquisition in 2003) andothers already offer this feature, albeit weakly. However Collarity seems very strongwith their innovative interface (Collarity Slider), outsourced approach (CollarityCompass) and promising technology.Social Search Read/WriteWeb has covered the area of social search very thoroughly alreadyin twoarticles in July byEbrahim Ezzy. Two good examples are Eurekster’s Swicki and Rollyo. Swicki is a community-driven search engine that allowsusers to create deep, focused searches on a specific niche – and ‘learns’ from itscommunity. Rollyo allows users to create and publishtheir own personal search engines, based on websites they decide to include in their“SearchRoll”. A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Related Posts last_img

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