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AltaVista Prisma
new suggestion tool

 12:15 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Anyone speak Dutch?

When I look at AltaVista now, I don't see what it shows on the screenshots on that page.



 5:48 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)


They will introduce this new options today, but we got a sneak preview.

Henk van Ess


 5:54 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Some important stuff

"index will be expanded from 6000000 to 11000000 docs"

"popular sites will be crawled 4 times a day instead of every 55 days"

"2700 sources of news will even be indexed 4 times an hour !"

"Prisma : when a user searches for only one word, Altavista will offer some refinements."


 5:54 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

All shown options will be available today, 8AM U.S. EST.


 7:45 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Very nice.

It could help to target Overture keywords.


 8:26 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Mooie vondst (nice find), Voelspriet,

isn't competition fine?

It looks like another search engine is coming with the categorization, theming, subject grouping. Google will be lagging behind with the Glossary feature with similar line-up but still in beta:

compare that with the Altavista preview [voelspriet.nl]screen-capture on Voelspriet's page.

Rather similar set-up.

What I find most interesting in the explanation is the comment which states that 50% of searchers only use one word search queries. Not that this is new, but that with offering such an associaton/categorisation overview (with multiple word theme related suggestions) you are teaching and leading the searcher towards better results. I never looked at it that way.


 8:39 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

<sidenote>AV is coming back on track. Good. Sheer size of index is still second league though.</sidenote>

This prisma feature is AVs version of something some of the leading engines have developed of lately, with FAST's topics being the best known example.

Best of those search suggestion/navigation tools I've come across so far is the one Exalead/AOL fr. are doing.

Most interesting would be to know, where those suggestions in the prisma section are coming from. Is it built from a static dictionary? Does it employ tracking of users queries? Or does it analyze webpages looking for common connections between words?


 9:26 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Most interesting would be to know, where those suggestions in the prisma section are coming from

Heini, I would assume they take the single word queries and show the most common double or triple word queries in which that single-word-query" occurs. Add a synonyms dictionary and top it off with some "who is who" lists for several sectors. They could also add the most occuring proximity double word sequences in the ODP category listings.


 9:29 am on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

Exactly, Vitaplease. Those are the options. But which of those DO they employ...? ;)


 12:13 pm on Jul 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

In Brief: How It Works
Dynamically based on the search string, AltaVista Prisma looks at frequently used terms and concepts from the top 50 results in the search result set and presents a list of the 12 "most strongly associated terms" from that search in the Prisma box.

Currently these terms are generated from the the title, url, and search result snippet. A version that utilizes the full-text of the page is in the works according to an AV spokesperson.

These terms provide what AltaVista calls a "360-degree spectrum of meaning". In other words these terms could assist in focusing/narrowing, expanding and/or redirecting the search. The searcher can then click and append that term to the original search or click on a chevron icon ( >> ) and run that term as a separate search.

After clicking on a maximum of two Prisma terms, the technology is turned-off but a link back to the previous search is offered.

AV Prisma technology was developed in house.

Prisma is currently available on AV's sites in the U.S., U.K., Canada, and Australian, Ireland, and New Zealand.

Teoma's "Refine" feature, particularly because the term suggestions are created dynamically, in a similar manner to AltaVista's Prisma. I've found the AV tool to be more useful.

More from AV about Prisma
[altavista.com ]


 6:08 am on Jul 3, 2002 (gmt 0)

Reuters Story [timesofindia.indiatimes.com] on altavistas new "Prisma" features. Looks and feels alot like Teoma's "refine results" to me.

Called AltaVista Prisma, the new service produces up to 12 sub- groups of results when a given term is entered in the search engine, the company said.

The term "eagles," for example, calls up subgroups including
"legal eagles," "nest," "Philadelphiaeagles, and "lyrics" -- automatically refining the user's search.

Also a story by Chris Sherman [searchenginewatch.com] on SearchEngineWatch.


 3:48 pm on Jul 3, 2002 (gmt 0)

I'm wondering if the "suggestions" for refining your search are or can be sponsored...


 9:14 am on Jul 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

Spliced my duplicate topic on the end here. (sorry fagan, I didn't see it here first). That was quite a scoop.


 12:15 am on Jul 23, 2002 (gmt 0)

had a decent play with it, it seems a little more on topic than Fast's version.

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