Friday, October 29, 2004
Apparently, according to Pam Beddard (Project Publicist) A vision of Britain through time website got half a million hits in a couple of hours. This doesn't surprise me in the slightest, given that the 1901 Census site was getting double that and it couldn't cope. I'm just surprised that they're suprised! However, their technical team is working on it, and 'normal service will be restored very soon'. I hope so, because it looks at though it could be very interesting. I'll keep a watch on the site and let you know if and when it reappears.
Phil 12:02 AM
Thursday, October 28, 2004
Two new domain names, .post and .travel could be available from next year, according to this report: Globetechnology
Phil 11:40 PM
Wednesday, October 27, 2004
Gary Price, over at the consistently useful ResourceShelf has as always a large number of interesting articles, including information on the search habits of the web searcher, briefs, and the professional reading shelf. If you've not seen it, I'd certainly recommend it as a must!
Phil 9:28 PM
Tuesday, October 26, 2004
The new website A vision of Britain through time provides information on Britain between 1801 and 2001, including maps, statistical trends and historical descriptions. Well, it would except that the service has been suspended due to a high level of demand. I really do despair sometimes.. don't these people learn *anything*? Family history is one of the really big subjects on the web, and the 1901 census site crashed I don't know how often before it was sorted. More recently the site offering photographs taken during WWII also fell over from too much demand. Can't people just look at the trends, and work out how many visitors they're going to get and plan accordingly?
Phil 11:21 PM
An article in the Guardian Unlimited discusses the success (or otherwise) of the Wikipedia. Main reason for mentioning this is that there's a quote from me in the article (I don't like it). Fascinating to see how a half hour discussion ends up as a couple of lines!
Phil 9:52 AM
Monday, October 25, 2004
Interesting article on Firefox, Microsoft's Worst Nightmare which mentions its origins, growth and potential future development. If you've not tried it yet, click on the link further down the page and download a copy.
Phil 8:58 AM
Sunday, October 24, 2004
Sometimes you see a search engine that is just startling, but not always in a good way, and the GoGettem Meta Search is just one of those. It supposedly searches 7 major engines, and I ran a search for my name (you know, the way you do), and it took 4 seconds to give me 3 results. However, what really made me laugh was their advice to searchers 'Too many terms spoil the results' ! I think it's back to the drawing board for this engine.
Phil 9:23 AM
Saturday, October 23, 2004
Microsoft has set a date for the release of its desktop search tool, according to Tech News on ZDNet and it'll be sometime before the end of 2004. It'll be interesting to see how it will compete with the Google version.
Phil 2:19 AM
Friday, October 22, 2004
Describe a concept and the OneLook Reverse Dictionary will give you appropriate words. Kind of like a super thesaurus.
Phil 5:59 PM
I've recently switched from using Internet Explorer to Firefox and I've written a short article on Why I've switched to Firefox. If you've not tried out Firefox, or haven't heard of it, I'd really suggest taking a look, then try it out!
Phil 2:46 PM
I was asked to give at presentation at the Internet Librarian International 2004 conference, and my slides have now been made available on their website. Scroll down to the bottom to see what I had to say on Using Advanced Search Techniques. Be aware that it's a short presentation, because I only had 20 minutes!
Phil 1:38 PM
Yahoo! now gives access to over a billion images.Yahoo! Image Search
Phil 11:13 AM
Interesting article from eWeek entitled Google Sets Sights on Clustering, Translation which discusses clustering and the Google stance on it.
Phil 11:07 AM
Tuesday, October 19, 2004
Now that Google desktop search has been around for a few days people are realising both how powerful it is, and consequently how dangerous it is. There are lots of articles on it, and this one - USATODAY.com - Google's new PC search tool poses risks - is a good example. I've been playing with it and I'm in two minds. Admittedly it IS very good - I've found stuff on my hard disk that I thought I'd lost, so I value it for that. However, it's also rather scary in what it does find! If you share a computer I personally wouldn't touch it with a bargepole. I'm also not impressed with the limited control you have over where and how it installs, and the limited file formats that it supports. However, if you're a home user, try it out!
Phil 10:21 AM
Just when you thought it was safe to think the browser wars were over. Firefox Gets Ready for Ad Splash to promote itself as an alternative to Microsoft IE. I made the switch to Firefox about a week ago, and I have to say it's superior to IE in just about every way possible. I'm very happy with it, and Microsoft development is going to have to pull out all the stops if they want to compete with it.
Phil 9:43 AM
Friday, October 15, 2004
Nice page of information on advanced operators in Google from the Google Guide
Phil 6:38 PM
Google has now produced its desktop search option. I've not yet had an opportunity to play with it, but there's a very nice write up full of interesting stuff at John Battelle's Searchblog so if you have 5 minutes go and read it and then try it yourself.
Phil 8:15 AM
Wednesday, October 13, 2004
We all know search engines don't cover the same ground. Thumbshot ranking has shown us that for a while. There's a nifty new utility called jux2 which compares Google, Yahoo and Ask Jeeves, and not only shows you the overlpa, but also the pages that one search engine has that another doesn't. Useful both for searchers and for web authors.
Phil 8:01 PM
Interesting article, much of which I happen to agree with, on 6 money making tips for online publishers. These include:
Dump dynamic content (Agreed)
Forget meta tags (Disagree)
Headlines should be graphics (Mainly disagree)
Get keywords into URLs (Agreed)
Track metrics (Agreed)
Do R&D before you launch (Agreed).
Phil 7:55 PM
Yes, if you didn't think that you had enough to contend with; new features in existing search engines, and other search engines appearing, you've got yet one more to deal with! Exalead does look interesting - I've played around with it for a while and it's pretty nifty. It does all that you'd expect, but has one or two extras such as proximity searching for example. Nice clear layout and an ability to swop between views of pages, it's worth trying.
Phil 1:07 PM
Tuesday, October 12, 2004
Very useful little article on how to optimise .pdf files so that they get a good ranking in search engines. Full story from Searchengineguide
Phil 8:43 AM
Sunday, October 10, 2004
From the always useful ResearchBuzz - a nerdstick is one of those little USB portable hard drives usually kept on a keychain or lanyard. I like it!
Phil 1:45 AM
Friday, October 08, 2004
Just as a bit of forewarning - I'll be at the Internet Librarian International 2004 conference on Monday and Tuesday next week, and will be presenting a paper on Advanced Search Techniques on the Tuesday. If I have the opportunity I'll also blog about the sessions that I attend.
Phil 12:04 PM
Microsoft have their second peek at their Search technology preview available now. Take a look at it, and see what you think, though be aware that it's still only bare bones.
Phil 12:23 AM
IceRocket about which I blogged a few days ago has now added in support for blog searching. It's an interesting move for a fairly new search engine to start hitting blogs this early in it's history, but is indicative of the importance blogs are having these days. It's not bad, though it'll be nicer when they can spider a little more quickly; it's not showing the more recent entries here, but hopefully it'll speed up.
Phil 12:20 AM
Thursday, October 07, 2004
Well, having woken up properly and shrugged off the jetlag I feel better able to comment on the event. I'm not going to summarise what we can talk about, since Liz Lawley has already done a splendid job of that. With regards the team itself, I was rather surprised that there weren't more folks with a library background (just Liz and I) and that was slightly disappointing. However, I guess that with a 30 person team Microsoft wanted to get a good spread of experience and interests.
I wasn't overly enthused at the end of Day One because, although we covered a lot of ground it seemed rather disjointed. However, it picked up the pace on Day Two, and I really began to get a sense of what Microsoft thinks its doing and where it wants to go. Lots of Microsoft folks around and they did a lot of listening and I spent a happy hour going over search concepts with a member of their team (to the extent that I completely forgot about lunch!)
My general impression was that Microsoft knows what it wants to achieve, and they've got some nifty ways of doing it. I don't think there are any doubts that we're in for an interesting time.
Phil 1:40 PM
Snap is a new search engine that allows you to quickly redefine and resort your results based on various different options, such as popularity or type of site for example. It works quickly and effectively and you can also search easily within your results. It looks rather neat and you can find it by following the link: Snap
Phil 8:45 AM
Google is reported to be widely expanding their in book search options. This service has been running for about a year so far, and they're obviously keen to make it grow by inviting publishers to provide them with content that can be scanned and included in the Google Print service. Shades of A9 coming out here without a doubt. More at: Google Print Opens Widely To Publishers
Phil 8:32 AM
Wednesday, October 06, 2004
In case you're wondering, I've not updated the weblog recently because I've been in Seattle at the Microsoft 'Search Champs' meeting. (The link takes you to a Feedster search, because I'm too tired from a 14 hour trip home to write more at this stage) Feedster RSS Search : \"search champs\". It was an interesting meeting, and I'll post some thoughts when I'm fully awake again, but don't expect too much by the way of substance, since we're all working under an NDA.
Phil 2:11 PM
Friday, October 01, 2004
Vivisimo have just launched a new clustering search engine called Clusty the Clustering Engine and I'm going to have problems not calling it Crusty the Clown. However, cheap joke aside, it's not bad. I've only briefly played with it, but it does work very nicely indeed. Worth looking at.
Phil 8:19 AM
This is just strange, but very interesting! Deliberately Concealed Garments Project | Clothing found hidden in buildings
Phil 8:05 AM