Search Engine Reviews

NOTE: Article links often change and are not continually updated. In case of a bad link, use the publication’s search facility, which most have, and search for the headline

Soople Offers Several Different Google Interfaces
ResearchBuzz, Feb. 12, 2004

Short review of new web page that lets you access some of Google’s advanced search options more easily.

Eurekster Launches Personalized Social Search
SearchDay, Jan. 21, 2004

Personalized search has long been promised as an important next step for increasing relevancy. Now it comes not from Google or Yahoo but instead from tiny Eurekster, which opens to the general public today.

Google’s Duplicate Content
ResourceShelf, Jan. 14, 2004

Gary Price highlights problems with duplicate content in Google’s index.

Google’s (and Inktomi’s) Miserable Failure, January 6, 2004

A search for miserable failure on Google bring up the official George W. Bush biography from the US White House web site. Dismissed by Google as not a problem, it really points out a case where the real miserable failure is Google itself. NOTE: Search Engine Watch members already read this in the last newsletter, but it’s been slightly updated since then.

A Couple of Comments About Google
(10 Things Google Needs To Fix)
Pandia, January 2004

Search expert Gary Price summarizes a variety of what might seem like little things that when added up reduce you confidence in Google. Fixing many of these things should be a priority.

Searching Google more efficiently
Pandia, January 2004

I’ve been meaning to mention Nancy Blachman’s recent book on searching with Google, “How To Do Everything With Google,” along with its associated web site. Fortunately, Panida’s done a great job describing both!

Do Web search engines suppress controversy?
First Monday, January 2004

Search engines seem to reflect the “sunny side” of controversial issues, this study finds. It does searches for topics such as “albert einstein” and “distance learning” which contain some controversial issues — did Einstein’s wife get proper credit for her contributions and problems with diploma mills, for example.

It then examines results gathered from various major search engines, finding that the controversial material doesn’t arise much. It’s not because of overt attempts to suppress it but instead because the bulk of material on the web doesn’t address the controversial issues but nonetheless is relevant to the query.

Solutions suggested are a change in linking patterns, which frankly isn’t going to happen. Ranking changes are suggested, but the paper assumes that the search engines can make judgments about what’s “objective.” The most effective suggestion is that searchers change their habits. Wondering if there’s controversy with Albert Einstein? Try a search for “albert einstein controversy.” Guess what? Do that on Google, and you’ll find the first result mentions the issue with his wife (which incidentally, is a page out the twURL project that this author created).

Of course, a key point of the paper — and one that I agree with — is that someone should get a variety of viewpoints when looking for a topic. Perhaps increasing default listings from 10 to 20 would help (that’s the rule at Yahoo and MSN but not at Google).

Search refinement can also be a huge help. AltaVista’s “Refine Your Search” suggestions, for example, are drawn from analyzing the top 100 matches. That can help bring out some subjects that might be buried in pages below the top ten (but not in the case of Einstein — I checked). Teoma’s Refine results can also be helpful, though again, not in this case.

A hallelujah to this part of the paper: “The general public that is growing increasingly dependent upon search engine technology has relatively low understanding of how the technology works or their responsibilities for its proper use.”

I absolutely agree. In fact, it goes exactly to how I concluded my big piece on all the Google changes at the end of last year (see Users must have an understanding of how search engines operate to make the right decisions, and that means important “signals” need to be explained, not kept as mysteries. (permalink to this item)

Librarians Better Than Google, Study Says
AP, Sept. 27, 2003

Cornell University reference librarians do a slightly better job answering questions via its free email service than those who pay for answers using the Google Answer service. The score was so close that no winner was declared. The survey itself can be found here.

Digging for Googleholes
Slate, July 16, 2003

Google’s not perfect (nor is any search engine, for that matter), but some believe it to be. Steven Johnson points out flaws to dispute this myth, though there are some flaws to his flaws.

For example, Google’s top results are claimed to be heavily skewed toward shopping sites, if you are looking for something that is sold online. To prove this, a search for “flowers” is shown to bring up mostly online florists at Google (same is true for AllTheWeb, Teoma and Inktomi, by the way).

Well, if you are searching for flowers, there’s indeed a good chance you’d like a florist. If you want information about flowers, then trying “flower information” brings back much more general, non-commercial information. And if you are doing research on tulips, then typing something specific like “tips on growing tulips” works great and is what you should do.

You wouldn’t walk into a library looking for tips about growing tulips and simply say to the librarian, “flowers.” Nor should you do the same with Google or any search engine. Certainly, though, it’s good if a search engine tries to help you along. An example of this is at Teoma, where a search for “flowers” suggests “flowers gardens” as an alternative in the Refine section of the page. Google is notable among the major search engines for not offering search refinement assistance like this.

The synonym problem described, where “apple” is dominated by results related to Apple Computers, is true enough — and true on AllTheWeb, Teoma and Inktomi as well. But refinement at Google certainly would help for the odd person interested in apples you can eat. Do a search for apples at MSN Search, and you’ll see “apples (food)” suggested as a topic. Select this, and you’ll get a list of much more relevant sites.

Feedster Updates Its Search Engine
ResearchBuzz, July 9, 2003

Feedster has added the ability to search using a variety of commands, such as by title and language. As for the comment about search engines indexing more XML and less HTML, that’s not really a solution. Search engines could already support fielded searching using HTML meta tags. The problem is that they don’t trust that information, based on long experience of seeing it misused. RSS so far doesn’t appear to have a major trust problem, but RSS content also doesn’t appear to be exposed to anywhere near the audience that search engines interact with. As RSS grows as a distribution source, expect to see trust factors become a bigger issue.

What’s the Best Search Engine?
SearchDay, June 3, 2003

What’s the best search engine? That depends on who (or what) you ask. Here’s what the search engines themselves recommend.

Inktomi, Google Win In Recent Relevancy Test
SearchDay, April 17, 2003

In December, I called for search engines to get beyond the hype of who is biggest or freshest and develop a commonly-accepted means of measuring actual relevancy. Now, the first such third-part test like this in ages has been done. VeriTest was commissioned by Inktomi to conduct the test. It found that in raw scoring, Inktomi came out tops — but just barely. Inktomi earned 1630 points, with Google just behind at 1597. That’s so close that I’d essentially consider the services tied.

The Value of Non-Commercial Web Directories
SearchDay, Jan. 16, 2003

Along with the many commercially built web directories available on the web, several non-commercial options exist which offer the searcher well organized collections of high quality resources.

Teoma Releases Version 2.0
SearchDay, Jan. 21, 2003

In some ways still the new kid on the search engine block, Teoma hits puberty today as “version 2” of the search engine is formally rolled out to the public.

AlltheWeb Alchemist Contest Winners Announced
SearchDay, Dec. 9, 2002

Now there’s a quick and easy way to change the look of the AlltheWeb search engine, by downloading one of the wining entries from the company’s Alchemist contest.

In Search Of The Relevancy Figure
The Search Engine Report, Dec. 5, 2002

While relevancy is the most important “feature” a search engine can offer, there sadly remains no widely-accepted measure of how relevant the different search engines are. Turning relevancy into an easily digested figure is a huge challenge, but it’s a challenge the search engine industry needs to overcome, for its own good and that of consumers. A look at the challenges and issues involved on the quest to get an accepted relevancy figure.

AltaVista, Overture Speak Up About Perfect Page Test
The Search Engine Report, Dec. 5, 2002

Last month, Search Engine Watch published the results of our “Perfect Page Test” and promised to provide feedback from the search engines tested, if any was received. We only got significant feedback from two services, AltaVista and Overture. Not surprisingly, these were the two that received failing marks. And with apologies to Overture, we never meant to score it alongside the others. At look at what happened with Overture, as well as some detailed feedback on problems with testing relevancy from AltaVista.

The Search Engine “Perfect Page” Test
SearchDay, Nov. 4, 2002

How effective are search engines at finding ‘ideal’ search result pages? Search Engine Watch tested the major engines to find out.

Betting on Web Search, Inktomi Unveils Upgrades, Nov. 20, 2002

Overview of changes in the latest version of Inktomi’s web search service, including the ability for paid inclusion customers to now indicate the country-origin of their URLs, spell checking and an expanded index.

Yahoo Renews With Google, Changes Results
The Search Engine Report, Oct. 9, 2002

After months of speculation, Yahoo announced last week that it has renewed its relationship to use Google’s results as part of its search listings. In addition, Yahoo made a substantial change to end its historic barrier between human-powered and crawler-based search results.

LookSmart Revives Wisenut Search Engine
SearchDay, Sept. 30, 2002

LookSmart has quietly relaunched its Wisenut search engine, bolstering its technology and refreshing its index with a brand new crawl of the web.

Inktomi Increases Size, Introduces Anti-Proximity
The Search Engine Report, Sept. 3, 2002

Last month Inktomi rolled out a larger, 2 billion web page index, as well as making some internal changes designed to improve the relevancy of its listings. The article below looks at some of the changes.

Grading the Search Engines
Fortune, Aug. 29, 2002

Fortune tests and rates search engines, though actual queries aren’t shown. Yahoo gets the top score, an A, followed by Google with B+, with B and MSN Search with a B-. Others were also rated and scored lower than B.

Free Full Text: FindArticles and MagPortal
Online, July/August 2002

Review of two sites that allow free access to full-text articles from periodicals.

Science Search Engine Scirus Gets New Features
SearchDay, Aug. 26, 2002

Elsevier Science and Fast Search & Transfer have launched a new release of Scirus, a science-specific Web search engine that won Search Engine Watch’s Best Specialty Search Engine Award in 2001.

MSN Adds Preview Screenshots, Ability To Dig Deeper Into Results
The Search Engine Report, Aug. 5, 2002

MSN Search is now showing “Search Preview” screenshots of web sites in results from within Internet Explorer while also offering the ability to go past the top 200 results. More information is in the article below:

When Smaller is Better
SearchDay, July 30, 2002

When you’re searching for help with everyday tasks, smaller, more focused directories are often more useful than search engines.

Paying for answers online
The Christian Science Monitor, July 22, 2002

Review of answer search services, in particular, Google Answers, where you pay to have someone do research for you.

Portals to the World
SearchDay, June 27, 2002

Looking for authoritative, in-depth information about the nations of the world? Check out Portals to the World, a robust online Baedeker from the U.S. Library of Congress.

SEC Upgrades EDGAR Search Engine
SearchDay, June 26, 2002

The SEC’s EDGAR database is an absolutely essential resource for business researchers, and recent upgrades have vastly improved its search interface.

Updates From FirstGov and Ask Jeeves
SearchDay, June 10, 2002

The search engines at FirstGov and Ask Jeeves have both been upgraded and enhanced with new features and capabilities.

Meta Search + Invisible Web + Virtual Librarians = Wondir!
SearchDay, June 6, 2002

A team of respected search industry veterans is building a new and different kind of information service that seeks to unify cutting edge technology with the web’s original egalitarian vision of people freely helping people.

Alexa Meets Google
SearchDay, May 14, 2002

Web navigation company Alexa has launched an intriguing new search engine powered by Google, offering powerful search tools with a number of unique twists.

Excite Metasearch Serves Up Equal Doses of Innovation and Monetization
Traffick, May 11, 2002

Excite has been relaunched as a metasearch service, where parent Infospace is promising a better balance between paid and editorial results. Review of the service.

New Search Online Metasearch Site is Loaded With Features Web Search Guide, April 23, 2002

Review of new meta search site Search Online.

Map This!
SearchDay, April 29, 2002

The Maptech MapServer contains over 60,000 topographic maps, nautical charts, aeronautical charts, and aerial and satellite photographs covering the United States.

Search Engines Home In
Washington Post, April 4, 2002

After Teoma’s official launch out of beta earlier this month, there was no end to articles written about the service. This one by Leslie Walker is unique in that she actually ran queries pitting Teoma against Google. Google won about three-quarters of the time, but she liked Teoma’s refine feature, something Google lacks.

Search Engine Freshness, April 4, 2002

Which is the freshest search engine? Google, with a range of between 1 day to 68 days old. Which is most out-of-date? WiseNut, with a range of 247 to 286 days old. Based on 12 sample searches and conducted by respected search engine commentator Greg Notess.

Speed Searching with Lycos Fast Forward
SearchDay, Feb. 14, 2002

Lycos’ new Side Search feature adds a new link to search results that lets you easily preview pages without having to click back and forth to the result page.

Turbo10 search engine crawls the hidden Web
Pandia, Feb. 6, 2002

Review of new invisible web search tool.

Google tlhIngan majQa’! (Google Does Klingon 🙂
SearchDay #196, Feb. 4, 2002

Google continues to go where no search engine has gone before, adding new interface languages including the warriors’ tongue, Klingon.

A “Hidden” Guide to the Business Web
SearchDay, Jan. 31, 2002

Like an underground mine filled with hidden treasures, one of the best business-oriented information resources is buried deep within a popular magazine’s web site.

Gateway to the Invisible Web
SearchDay, Dec. 4, 2001

The Resource Discovery Network is an outstanding gateway to thousands of Invisible Web sites that’s as close to a search engine for the hidden web as you’re likely to find.

Image Search Engines
RLG DigiNews, Dec. 2001

Comprehensive test of image search engines, with Google coming out on top.

On searching the Usenet
Pandia, Nov. 11, 2001

Review of Gripe, a Usenet search service and online reader.

The Wayback Machine: A Web Archives Search Engine
SearchDay, Oct. 30, 2001

The Wayback Machine is a phenomenal search engine that contains over 100 terabytes and 10 billion web pages archived from 1996 to the present.

Highlights of Ixquick Metasearch
About Web Search Guide, Oct. 16, 2001

Review of the Ixquick meta search engine, which really should be among your top choices, if you are seeking a meta search tool.

Searching With Latitude
SearchDay, Oct. 1, 2001

The Degree Confluence Project is an unusual but intriguing search engine, using latitude and longitude as search keywords.

To Google or to GoTo?
BusinessWeek, Sept. 28, 2001

Writer Heather Green pits Goto against Google and finds that both are good in different situations.

Tasty New Search Engines Web Search Guide, July 16, 2001

Review of two new crawler-based search engines, Teoma, which I wrote about last month, and Wisenut, which sounds similar to Teoma and well-worth a look.

RealSearch with Internet Explorer
SearchDay, July 15, 2001
If you’re running Internet Explorer, you can forget visiting the home page of the major search engines and directories from now on. Just enter your query into IE’s address window, prefaced by the name of the search service you’d like results from, and RealSearch will take care of the rest.

Hang Ten with SurfWax Metasearch
SearchDay, July 10 & 11, 2001

SurfWax is a metasearch engine with some powerful advanced features, including the ability to build your own customized gateways into the invisible web. In two parts, with URLs to both parts shown above.

Power Up With New Metasearch Tools Web Search Guide, July 9, 2001

Review that covers the advantages of meta searching and some relatively new meta search tools, SurfWax, Vivisimo and qbSearch.

Napster, Gnutella have competition
ZD Net Australia, June 15, 2001,2000020814,20232639,00.htm

A look at Napster alternatives, focusing on Audiogalaxy.

Search Engine Compares Terms
ResearchBuzz, June 7, 2001

Review of a tool that lets you compare how many listings appear for different words on various search engines.

Search engines got you frazzled? This freebie searches smarter
ZDNet, April 12, 2001,10738,2707186,00.html

Review of new search companion for your browser called Clicksearch.

Search site stumbles in a key area — simplicity
Detroit Free Press, April 10, 2001

The new version of Copernic’s meta search software didn’t impress reviewer Mike Wendland.

Searching the Web gets easier with engines that try to read your mind
US News & World Report, April 16, 2001

Now Google saves lives! Someone wondering if they were having a heart attack did a search on Google, found a page explaining the symptoms, then got to a hospital for help. Without Google, “I’d be dead today,” he’s quoted as saying. A look at various search engines, search technology and tips.

iWon: What Value for the Information Professional?
Online, March 2001

Review of the iWon service, from the perspective of the professional researcher.

Don’t Be Shy, Ladies – Google Him!
New York Observer, Jan. 15, 2001

Forget “Do You Yahoo?” The question on the dating scene is, “Have you been Googled?” In what sounds like it should be an episode of “Sex And The City,” Deborah Schoeneman of the New York Observer explains how checking up on potential dating partners using Google is all the rage. What’s your search appeal?

Cache at the End of His Rainbow
Wired News, Jan. 15, 2001,1367,41065,00.html

How Google’s caching feature is being used by people to recover missing web sites.

The Old-Fangled Search Engine
Washington Post, Jan. 13, 2001

Search engines have not made libraries and librarians obsolete.

Ask a Librarian, Not Jeeves
Wired, Nov. 24, 2000,1284,40308,00.html

Libraries are fighting the suggestion that web-based search and answer tools will be their replacements through a new virtual reference desk called the Collaborative Digital Reference Service ( The service is not yet live.

Search Engines: PC Magazine Review
PC Magazine, Nov. 15, 2000,6755,2652815,00.html

Editors Choice awards went to Google and Northern Light in PC Magazine’s annual review of search engines. They each were scored as excellent for overall performance. Overall runners-up were Direct Hit, HotBot and Oingo. For “simple search,” Google, Northern Light and MSN Search all received top scores.

The Trouble with Search Engines
eCompany, Nov. 10, 2000,1653,8868,00.html

HotLinks, the search guide compiled out of user bookmarks, recently circulated a study showing that it listed important popular sites that traditional human-powered directories missed. Writer Erick Schonfeld put the claim to the test and came back feeling that the traditional services held their own.

Stunt: AskOJ vs. Ask Jeeves
eCompany, October 2000,1640,7515,00.html

Humorous look comparing questions put to OJ Simpson at the site versus questions put to Ask Jeeves

Dogpile, The Speaker of the House, and A Little Test
Search Engine Guide, Sept. 18, 2000

Turns out that an aide to the Speaker of the US House of Representatives is a fan of the Dogpile metasearch engine.

At New Breed Of Vertical Search Engines, The Results Are Coming Fast and Few
SatireWire, June 2000

Perhaps a vertical search engine can be too specialized. This piece pokes fun at the concept.

CNET’s Ultimate Guide to Search
CNET, May 31, 2000

Comprehensive review from CNET on top search engines, meta search engines, topical search sites, tips and more. Of the search engines tested, Google came out tops for relevancy and tied with Yahoo for tops overall. However, Inktomi gets blamed for the lack of matches at Yahoo yet doesn’t get credited for helping MSN Search do well. Inktomi’s not to blame in the case. Rather, it’s Yahoo’s choice not to dig deeply into Inktomi’s listings.

Why leave your ‘marks online?
Salon, March 28, 2000

A look at the growth of online bookmark companies, which failed to make a hit with writer Damien Cave.

The Battle for Pocketbooks and Minds
Washington Post, March 24, 2000

A look at new and existing military portals.

Interview With The Search Engine
FN Wire, March 2000

Humor site FN Wire interviews Ask Jeeves — and I do mean Ask Jeeves — not someone who works there.

Major Sites Hawking Minor’s Private
SatireWire, Feb. 14, 2000

A satirical piece that pokes fun at how major search sites take any terms we give them and automatically suggest that we buy books or do other things on our search topic, even if it makes no sense.

Which search engine can make you a millionaire?
Seattle Times, Feb. 6, 2000

Another “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire” test, but unfortunately, there’s no recap to show which search engine did the best overall.

Want to win $1M? Don’t Ask Jeeves
ZDNet, Jan. 22, 2000,4586,2425612,00.html

ZDNet puts Ask Jeeves to the Millionaire test. And by the way, it’s apparently against the rules for your friend to use anything but their memory.

Reconnaissance Over the Web
Washington Post, Jan. 3, 2000

Review of a new military search engine and searching for military information, in general.

New World of Web Reviews
Internet World, Dec. 1, 1999

A look at the emergence of comparison shopping and product review sites on the web.

Best Search Sites on the Web
PC Magazine, Sept. 20, 1999

Yahoo, Northern Light and HotBot take top honors out of the 15 services reviewed.

Web Portals
PC Magazine, Sept. 6, 1999,6755,2327792,00.html

This review looked specifically at portal features. Yahoo came in tops, with Excite as runner-up.

Search Sites,6755,2327819,00.html

Search Engine Shoot-Out
Cnet, April 7, 1999,10000,0-3817-7-276910,00.html

Cnet tested five major search engines with 20 test queries, then evaluated them by accuracy, along with comments about duplicate and broken links. HotBot took top accuracy honors, followed by Excite. AltaVista and Infoseek tied for third, while pre-Open Directory-powered Lycos came in last.

Search Engine Torture Test
About Web Search Guide, June 4, 1999

Chris Sherman tries some common queries on the major search engines to see how they perform. He found Infoseek did best, AltaVista and Excite worst (though Excite got a thumbs-up for its movie results), and Lycos to be good — as long as you don’t mind being rerouted to content within its own site.

Find It on the Web
PC World, June 1999,1212,10727+1+0,00.html

Comprehensive summary of major search services and a wide-variety of specialty search tools, plus search utilities and general tips.

If Search Engines Were People
About Web Search Guide, May 21, 1999

Gives a personality to each of the major search engines to help you decide which to choose.

Find it on the Web
PC Magazine, December 1998

PC Magazine’s annual survey of search sites. Editors’ Choice awards went to Yahoo for simple search, Northern Light for advanced search, Ask Jeeves For Kids for kids’ search, and Go2Net/MetaCrawler for metasearch. Honorable mentions went to Google for simple search and HotBot for advanced search. The article is a great round-up of large, small and niche services. I only wish the reviews had been longer, and that the services not selected as top picks had still been rated, somehow.

PC Computing 1998 MVP Awards: Search Engine
PC Computing, December 1998

HotBot took the top honors in the search engine category, while Excite and Yahoo got finalist mentions. Infoseek’s Express metasearch software took the MVP for web utility (see second URL).

Web Portals: Home On The Web
PC Magazine, Sept. 1998

A review of sites primarily for their portal features, such as free email and home pages, chat, ability to personalize, etc. Excite got Editor’s Choice, and honorable mentions went to Yahoo and Microsoft Start. For searchers, of interest are the specific “Directory Search” rankings. These evaluate the hand picked selections at each service. Here, Excite and Yahoo got top marks, with Infoseek, Lycos and AltaVista taking second place. However, since AltaVista’s directory is powered by LookSmart, that gives HotBot’s LookSmart powered directory and LookSmart itself second place scores, though they weren’t included in the review.

The Internet Search-Off
Searcher, Feb. 1998

The Internet Search-Off asked professional researchers to pit traditional services such as DIALOG against web-based services such as AltaVista. In general, it was found that it takes longer to find information using web-based services, and that searches using web-based services are more likely to bring up irrelevant documents.

However, the Search-Off found that web-based services were useful for certain searches, such as gathering product information. It also lists when to use traditional services (for those with access to them) and when to use either.

The Search-Off also revealed interesting statistics regarding the most popular search engines, as rated by professional researchers. AltaVista was by far the favorite, used for 45% of the searches received in the Search-Off. HotBot came in at 20%, and Excite and Infoseek both rated 14%.

Search engine shoot-out: top engines compared
Cnet, Feb. 1998

Cnet gives HotBot top honors, especially for its fresh index. Infoseek ranks second in a photo finish and gets a perfect 5 for accuracy. However, Infoseek may well be entitled to first place. The review gave it a low score for lacking advanced search capabilities, which Infoseek actually has. AltaVista also gets an honorable mention. WebCrawler gets locked out, lumped in with directories, though it has a comparable size to Open Text and is far more up-to-date.

Your Complete Guide To Searching The Web
PC Magazine, Dec. 2, 1997

An excellent, comprehensive guide to searching the web. Reviews of the major search engines, people finders, metacrawlers and more. Must reading, if you are trying to evaluate various tools. Editors’ Choice awards go to HotBot and Yahoo. Other search engines weren’t ranked, but Infoseek matches those two in terms of stars awarded in the query tests. WebCrawler also had a strong showing, and Northern Light got a nod as one to watch as it grows. ProFusion and MetaCrawler got Editors’ Choice awards for the metacrawler category. One big flaw. Excite got knocked down for bad news search results, while WebCrawler was highly rated for its news search. The two services provide identical results — they only have a different look and feel.

Internet World, Dec. 1997

Review of the major search engines, with AltaVista rated tops, followed closely by HotBot, then Infoseek and Northern Light. The review is not online.

1997 PC Computing MVP Awards
PC Computing, Nov. 1997

HotBot gets top honors, with Excite and Infoseek named as finalists.

Search engines: The next generation
Network World Fusion, Oct. 20, 1997

An interesting look at the emergence of specialty search engines, though it incorrectly calls metacrawlers an emerging tool. Metacrawlers have been around for ages — there are just more of them, now.

Seek and Ye May Find
Kiplinger Online, Oct. 97

Kiplinger performed two searches, for a wine-related topic, and for a money-related topic, then used the results and other evaluations for a brief review of the search engines. Yahoo and Infoseek were top picks.

Super Search Sites
FamilyPC, Sept. 97

A round up of all the major search sites, with ratings and tips, especially from a family use perspective. Of particular interest is a review of kid-oriented search engines and directories, with comments from the child reviewers: “I searched for Legos and found lots of radical things!” Yahoo and Excite took top scores, followed by Infoseek.

The Right Search Engine
Internet World, Aug. 97
-link to long to display-

2nd Annual Search Engine Shoot-out
PC Computing, Sept. 1997

PC Computing yearly look at the search engines. Don’t confuse this report with the 2nd Annual PC Computing Search Engine Challenge, below.

Find Anything Online
ComputerLife, August 97

A review of top search tools, with a nice features charts and ratings.

1,001 Internet Tips: Search Engines
PC Computing, July 1997

Tips about using some of the major search engines.

“Just the Answers, Please:” Choosing a Web Search Service
Searcher Magazine, May 97

An excellent rundown on how the search engines fare for searches ranging from the technical to consumer-oriented. A sidebar provides a nice summary of major search engine features and searching tips.

Supercharge Your Web Searches
NetGuide, May 97

Reviews and details of each of the major search engines, which I wrote for NetGuide.

2nd PC Computing Search Engine Challenge
May 9. 1997, Las Vegas, Nevada

PC Computing put several search engines to the test at NetWorld+Interop 97 in May. Results are on the Strategic Alliances page, or via the link above.

Rating the Raters
Who’s Marketing Online, April 97

An interesting look at review sites, how they rate each other and quality of reviews in terms of freshness or inconsistent praise and criticism.

Send in the search party
The Guardian, March 97

A journey behind the scenes at Alta Vista. Visit the archive link above and search for the article, as the original link has now changed.

The Internet: Bringing Order from Chaos
Scientific American, March 97

A series of articles on search engines, heavy on technical issues of improving searching and categorizing. There’s a nice sidebar in advances in image searching. Find out how software could identify 43% of the nude photos in a sample collection.

So Many Search Engines. So Little Time
Washington Post, Jan. 97

IW Labs rates the raters
Internet World, Jan. 97

All-Out Search
PC Magazine, Dec. 96

Netsmart: Better, Faster Web Searching
Macworld, Dec. 96

1st PC Computing Search Engine Challenge
Oct. 11, 1996, Mountain View, California

The actual event never occurred, due to Internet problems, so this isn’t really a review. Instead, the challenge devolved into a laser tag war between Excite and Infoseek. A quite amusing round-by-round account of that battle, which Excite won, can be found via the link above.

The Search is Over
PC Computing, Sept. 96

Search Engines Get Faster, But Not Always Better
PC World, Sept. 96

Search Engine Showdown
Internet World, May 96

Seek and Ye Shall Find (Maybe)
Wired, May 96

Find It on the Net
PC World, Jan. 96

The Search Engine That Could
PC Computing, Sept. 95

Related reading

Optimizing for position zero: The future of voice search
Capitalizing on paid social in B2B industries
Google’s average position sunset: Are you set up for the transition?