Sebenarnya itu topik tugas saya yang minggu lalu saya kumpulkan. Saat mengerjakan tugas ini, saya menemukan banyak hal menarik yang dapat saya share di sini, terutama dari website-website yang saya temukan.
Ini kutipan dari laporan yang saya kumpulkan, karena itu dalam bahasa Inggris. Hopefully, you can all understand.🙂

Everyone knows that Google is one of the best (possibly the best) search engines right now. Most people prefer to use this search engine rather than other search engines. Most of them even set their homepage to Google (iGoogle). But, there are some other services offered that could be different from Google approach. They are either using another search algorithm which they believe that it performs better than others or providing new features that have not been offered before.

As an example, Ask.com (http://www.ask.com/) uses ExpertRank algorithm (formerly known as Teoma) which goes beyond mere link popularity to determine popularity among pages. Teoma analyzed links in context to rank a web page’s importance within its specific subjects. For instance, a web page about soccer would rank higher if other web page about soccer link to it. This is also known as subject-specific popularity. Ask.com says that performing this task in which includes identifying topics, the experts of those topics, and popularity amongst those experts at the exact moment of search query is processed requires many additional calculation that other search engine do not perform. Moreover, Ask.com also provides suggestion to expand and narrow the search term. As far as I know, Google is working on this issue as well. I am quite sure that Google Sets (http://labs.google.com/sets) is one of important parts of the system.

Search features are another aspect of providing good search engine. They could be vertical (specific) search, suggestion, or good user interface. There are many vertical search engines which are preferred bycertain users. For example: Digg (http://digg.com/) for share content, Technorati (http://technorati.com/) for blog and tagged social media, Retrevo (http://www.retrevo.com/) for consumer electronics. Better user interface offers assistance for user to evaluate and explore search result. Vivisimo (http://vivisimo.com/) gives clustered results, in a tree form, to make users easier explore and evaluate search results. This feature is also offered by some meta search engines such as Clusty (http://clusty.com/) which is owned by vivisimo, and Grokker (http://www.grokker.com/). Furthermore, Grokker also provides Map View. Here is the example (follow the link). In this aspect, Google is also working hard to provide additional useful feature to its users, making it faster, easier, and user friendlier. Prototype of the work can be found in Google Experimental Search (http://www.google.com/experimental/).

Related to web 2.0 which encourage web users to collaborate in providing good resources, some companies even have tried to organize and make use of it. Swivel (http://www.swivel.com/) is a very good example. Swivel tries to make data useful. Every user can post and share data so people can share insights, makegreat decisions, and improves lives.I think this service will be a huge data repository, and could be next YouTube for data. Another good example is Spock (http://www.spock.com/), people search engine. This service uses man and machine as the approach to search people. Spock performs some entity resolution algorithm (to distinguish and organize web content about people in the web) combine with Spock members tag to provide the result.

There are many aspects of search engine that can be explored. So, although Google is the most popular search engine right now with its complicated and sophisticated architecture, there are always other aspects that other search engine can offer. These things make all search engine companies, including the leaders such as Google, Ask.com, Yahoo still keep trying to develop some idea for an ideal search engine.

Update:
Selain itu, masih ada beberapa website yang saya temukan kemudian. Beberapa di antaranya sangat menarik.

  • FareCast (http://www.farecast.com/): Smart travel search
    Farecast merupakan travel search engine. Search engine ini dapat membantu kita mencari penerbangan. Yang menarik dari website ini adalah adanya airfare prediction. Mereka dapat memberi saran tentang harga tiket, apakah akan naik (beli sekarang) atau turun (tunggu).
  • Pluggd (http://www.pluggd.com/): Podcast search
    Pluggd adalah podcast search, jadi kita dapat mencari podcast di sini. Yang menarik dari website ini adalah adanya track bar yang menunjukkan bagian-bagian podcast yang sesuai dengan search query kita. Jadi kita tidak perlu melihat semuanya, cukup melihat yang sesuai dengan apa yang kita cari.
  • Quitura (http://www.quintura.com/): using tag cloud to navigate query
    Yang menarik dari website ini adalah kita adanya navigasi query dengan menggunakan tag cloud.