Tuesday, June 06, 2006

A different kind of search engine

As I'm obviously taking a break from the personal anecdotes (for lack of time), I thought I'd drop a word about a neat little search engine called MozDex. MozDex is built on a core of seed sites provided by the Open Directory Project. That is, MozDex started crawling the Web to build its index by first crawling Open Directory.

Being listed in DMOZ (the Open Directory Project) was for several years considered a good thing, and many sites actively campaigned for inclusion in the DMOZ listings. Not every site made its way in. And DMOZ has come under increasingly frequent criticism for being politically manipulated by unscrupulous editors. Some of their unpublished policies have also infuriated me in the past, especially given that they don't enforce those policies consistently.

Nonetheless, despite the bad things said about DMOZ, most of the sites listed in the directory are considered to be good quality content sites. Crawling from the DMOZ directory's listings should, in theory, keep a small search engine away from indexing most of the spam sites.

MozDex also uses open source code. That is, you can create your own search engine with their Nutch search source code, if you want to. MozDex is therefore a "known" quantity in many respects, and people may feel comfortable trying out this search engine.

The cool thing is that it was taken over by the present owners as a resource to supplment their Canadian search engine. MozDex is supposed to provide supplemental results for Canadian users. Nonetheless, it's an "international" search engine and I have tested it myself. I am impressed with the results and the user interface. There are very few small search engines that win that kind of endorsement from me.

Try it out. Ask your friends and family to try it out. I'm tired of having only Google, Yahoo!, MSN, and Ask to play with. Let's see if MozDex has what it takes to become the new kid in the search industry's town.


Anonymous Chris said...

Yeah, it would be nice to have some more good search engines. We'd get another set of top results to check through.

I tried to submit my URL, but the email bounced straight back. It is a shame, cause this is such a small thing and remember... first impressions last.

I think I should try their support next... maybe I will have better luck?!

8:46 AM  

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