Sunday, February 27, 2005

Clusty, the Clustering Search Engine

How do search engine developers think up names? I guess there is some logic to the name of this new search engine. After you enter a search statement and click the “cluster” button, a results page appears with links to “clusters by topic” in the left column. On the right side of the page is a more traditional results list. Clusty is not the first search engine to offer results grouped by narrowing topics, but it does do it in an easy to use way. Click on a topic to get a more focused set of results. I also found that I could customize Clusty, telling the service which kinds of searches I would like to perform. I added searching blogs to my tab choices and dropped shopping and gossip. I tried searching several topics in blogs and the service works, but especially good search terms have to be used to get a good results list, as the bloggers are not using controlled vocabulary. In other words, be specific. The tab for searching gossip news is a service that I have not seen before. I will probably use other search engines more, but I may use this service for the blog searching and the clustering.

I found interesting results searching for my blog by name. The results list included a link for the blog as a whole and one more for a specific posting. I found two links to Aaron Schmidt's Walking Paper blog, which mentioned this blog, and one entry for LISFeeds which includes the blog in its list of library feeds. A Google search brought back a similar result, only there was one link to Aaron's blog and two to LISFeeds. The Google search could also be expanded to include omitted results. Either way, blog was found.

1 comment:

Shirley J. said...

Thanks for the tips on Clusty. I use this engine quite a bit as I like the clusters it produces and its clarity.

--Just found out about your blog. Have fun!