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Alternative Search Engines Forum

This 56 message thread spans 2 pages: 56 ( [1] 2 > >     
What's your favourite search engine that's not main stream?
pick an engine - any engine - from this list
jeremy goodrich

 8:55 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Which one of these would you say is a contender? Why / why not?

What characteristics make a good up and coming SE? What should we be watching for?

Some possibilities include:

Gigablast [gigablast.com] - Pretty interesting for a 1 person show.

WiseNut [wisenut.com] - Did they ever update their database after getting out of beta?

Vivisimo [vivisimo.com] - Interesting concept, too cluttered for my taste, but perhaps as you get used to it, it gets better?

Yuntis [yuntis.ecsl.cs.sunysb.edu] - Very interesting, loads of bells and whistles, university project is definitely one to watch.

Alexa [alexa.com] - Owned by Amazon, can you say big brother? (sorry). But - they got news & reviews on every site of the web...well, at least - they say they do :)

KarTOO [kartoo.com] - Neat flash interface, company says it's a product demo - kind of like Alltheweb is a product demo for Fast Search & Transfer. Another novel concept, but will it fly with the public?

Search Hippo [searchhippo.com] - Another 1 person show, they've got some interesting ( free ) keyword data, but nobody seems to be using it...will that change? It's been around for a while.

OpenFind [openfind.com] Forgot this one first time around, very large database, but the algo needs some refinement - as well as a refresh or two. In the same league as WiseNut, imho.

[edited by: jeremy_goodrich at 10:51 pm (utc) on Feb. 19, 2003]



 8:59 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)


the maps are brillant. very useful for looking at keyword dominace netwide - well the SE's that kartoo uses as feeds for its own serps.


 9:11 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

My vote is for yuntis - the more buttons the better as far as i'm concerned ;)

It looks like they're working really hard at relevancy, which I like.

It's great you can see an overview on links in Kartoo. Aren't the results taken from Google, though?

jeremy goodrich

 9:22 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

KarTOO is a meta search engine with a unique interface, that's their value proposition. :)


 9:29 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I think that most of the Europeans have local engines which they use in preference to the minor global engines.

Personally I like the Mirago local search feature.

But if forced to choose out of the globals I would say that Yuntis still looks very promising.


 9:30 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)


Contender for what?

The two I use for specific purposes:

1. Vivisimo - great for finding sites to "seed" a specialized directory with. I start with Vivisimo for a broad overview of the subject. A good meta like V. does that very well.

2. Searchhippo - I use it for backfill (secondary) results on one of my specialized directories and it works very well via XML feed. Free.

I also get some traffic from Searchhippo on several sites. No great floods of traffic but enough to be on the radar.

jeremy goodrich

 9:33 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Contender for traffic, market share, ideas, mind share, eyeballs, interest, free press, hype, etc.

Seems that there ought to be something out there that people will get excited about.

Perhaps only search engine geeks like us follow these things today, but in the future - one of these could be Google. You never know...


 9:37 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

KarTOO - if only because it's such an immense departure from every other search engine out there - pure eye candy!

Gigablast has balls (for want of a better description) and that near instant indexing is a fantastic feature.

Any more for any more?



 9:41 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Kartoo - it looks like nothing else out there!


 9:42 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have to hand it to both Gigablast and Searchhippo for moxie. For one man bands they have done pretty well.

I think some consolidation up at the top of the SE industry will allow these guys to move up.


 10:29 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

None of the above. Openfind.

There's some goofiness with its results, but I like many of the ideas here. I like the font colors of the layouts, I like the sort options, I like the daily search options, etc.

[edited by: RBuzz at 11:10 pm (utc) on Feb. 19, 2003]

jeremy goodrich

 10:52 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the reminder! I forgot about that one. If they would update their DB, OpenFind could get very interesting. They have a lot of stuff indexed.

Are there any other 'unkown' but 'could be good' engines with novel interfaces, unusual ( and good ) results, or major university projects we are missing?


 11:13 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I think Teoma is pretty slick, nice interface and I like the the easy search refinements.


 11:17 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)


jeremy goodrich

 11:17 pm on Feb 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

lol, pmac -> we have a forum for that one. :)

Yes, Teoma is pretty cool - perhaps that's why it gets traffic & free press (mentioned recently on CNN, i think).

For more on Teoma, you might consider visiting the WembasterWorld Ask Jeeves & Teoma Search Engines forum [webmasterworld.com]

I'm trying to 'stir the pot' so to speak, for some of the smaller / lesser known, but could still be cool search engines.


 12:29 am on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

Teoma, then Kartoo


 12:31 am on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>'stir the pot'

Most everything else is a directory. The sad truth is that all the ones not mentioned are probably dead or dying. The bar and the knowledge base required for a general search engine is so high now that the small fry do not stand a chance. Not in general search.

It is specialize or die.


 8:29 am on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

You know, Hyperbee will be kinda cool if it ever gets going: [hyperbee.com...]


 5:48 pm on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

Vivisimo for sure. You do get used to it.

troels nybo nielsen

 6:22 pm on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

Gigablast. For it's scandinavian connection and for it's very fast indexing. The other engines mentioned are virtually unknown to me.

I would opt for [szukacz.pl...]

Although I do not understand it's Polish interface. I like the idea of a local search engine in a country that has not been associated with advanced technology. And actually Szukacz has an interesting international database. For some search terms I on page 1 found high quality websites, that I did not know.


 8:01 pm on Feb 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

For me to use a search engine other than one of the majors/middles (google, atw, teoma, etc), it needs to have something unique.

So Vivisimo and Kartoo, while both meta engines, offer something useful. I haven't really found myself using Kartoo much though.

Both Openfind and Searchhippo seem to lack in relevance at the moment.

I don't use Alexa to search, but I sometimes use it for its various statistics (traffic, related pages, etc).

Gigablast is good, but it just doesn't offer anything that I don't get elsewhere. Actually, I just went there now and the site seems to be down?

WiseNut: meh.

Yunits: very promising. I was reading through all the advanced query possibilities a few days ago, it was a booleaner's dream :-). As much as I like the advanced capabilities, hardly anyone (%) even uses Google's advanced search. The masses will not be learning to use INCL, sasrefs:, and NEAR m, n anytime soon. Yuntis is of course, still in the research stage, and it will need an index much larger than 4 million to compete with even Teoma.


 10:42 am on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

Does anyone use Query Server (www.queryserver.com)? Another one man effort (blowing my own trumpet for a change....) although effort has been lacking lately, and the site is in desperate need of an update.


 2:34 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

AWillemsen welcome to the forums.

>>Does anyone use Query Server

About a year ago I was getting some traffic from QS. That has tapered off now.

I do think you are on to something very good and I hope you will keep developing it. I think I would be more inclined to use it if the site "felt" like a SE site. Does that make sense?


 2:59 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)


Thanks for the encouragement.

My trouble is that I'm torn between two masters - the users who (like you) want the site to be more like a normal SE, and Open Text who wants the site to both look like the corporate Open Text site and act as a marketing tool for the Query Server product. Naturally, the people who pay my salary win! However, I will pass your suggestion on, in the hope that things will change in the future.




 3:22 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

Teoma is my new default (but I consider them mainstream), then kartoo.


 3:27 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

When using Kartoo, do you use the Flash version or the Html version? I've only used the flash one- but I think it feels a little, well, cheesy...


 7:49 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

what's cool about this thread is that i'm learning about some new sites i hadn't heard of before (that exalead and mapstan etc)

lesser known ones i like are: smarter.com, wotbot.com, yuuup.com

jeremy goodrich

 7:53 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)


Smarter - ten results for 'stuff'

wotbot -> doesn't even have an about page

And Yuup? That's not an actual search engine.

:) We try to discuss things that are new & different, and could be something....

eg, if their db doesn't have a few million urls ( like the ODP as a seed, for example) then it's not really a search engine.

Every major search engine uses the ODP - without exception. It's an incredible corpus of data, and a perfect 'seed' for extrapolating a basic link structure. :)

But thanks for providing a few examples of the types of engines that we don't cover here.

Cheers, and welcome to WebmasterWorld!


 9:59 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi Jeremy,

I understand where you're coming from - but with smarter.com there's a button in the bottom left for 'more' which will display the next page of results. The thing i liked about smarter is if you search for a term like 'golf' you can see what they are trying to do - a kind of search/portal hybrid thing.

About all SEs using ODP, yes its a great source of links, but if you were going to use that as your main source of data for a search engine then you wouldn't have any of the body text for each site to search, just the ODP description (i've never used the dunp myself, so apologies if I'm wrong)
which would be fairly useless.

I just prefer sites that have gone out and tried to crawl and get proper content to search through, even if they have to start small - all SEs started from scratch one day.


jeremy goodrich

 10:11 pm on Feb 21, 2003 (gmt 0)

What I meant by using the odp is as a seed for links to follow, and building a corpus based on that.

The trouble with discussing a small engine, say one with less than 10 million uls, is that all to often, it is the person that owned / built / or is involved with the engine they'd like to discuss.

While that is not always bad, how do we know the difference between a 'quality' engine and a small one that somebody built over the weekend?

yes, I noticed that smarter is also using fast ( their logo on the bottom ) and the overture listings at the top -> but we've got forums here for pay per click, and also for alltheweb / which is owned / run by Fast Search and Transfer.

If we discussed here, in this forum, every engine on the planet, we could pick 1 a day, and have engines to discuss till 2030 :)

99.9% of those will never have any traffic - because people don't need them.

Similarly, people don't *need* WiseNut, Gigablast, KarTOO, etc - for the most part, none of those have anything 'novel' with the exception being the interface aspect of KarTOO.

The reason we won't discuss every small engine on the block here is that if we did, how would we know the difference between a project that will be something next year, and one person's attempt to violate the WebmasterWorld Terms of Service [webmasterworld.com].

Answer is, we'll never know.

If smarter, or any other search engine for that matter, gets some market share / users / funding / what not, then yes, we will be discussing it here.

Big time.

Till then, those are just good examples of the kinds of things that don't really fit in.

We're after engines that could produce referrals today, tomorrow, and next year.

We've seen, time and again, portal, engine, etc fail - because they didn't have anything novel to offer the user. They didn't market themselves effectively. They didn't promote among the community that, in many ways, could have helped them survive.

Think about Northern Light, Excite, InfoSeek, (now) Altavista, etc - they all had serious $$$, and now are basically toast, with little to no traffic.

Nothing to see, nothing to do.

How is one person wiht a database of 300K urls or what not going to even hope to compete with that, if those failed, the person building the db of 300K - if they stop there - had best pack it up and save themselves the heartache of failure.

But - if the can do something novel, interesting, and exciting, believe me - we'll be discussing it, and they will benefit immensely from the huge crowd of webmasters here, and at the tons of other community / webmaster related sites.

I hope this helps clarify my point a bit better. I started this thread to try to get a few ideas for what we should talk about here, versus what we end up talking about.

There is a lot of interest in search engines, obviously - we just need to keep focused on those that are *the best of the rest* as opposed to simply being, the rest of the rest.

This 56 message thread spans 2 pages: 56 ( [1] 2 > >
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