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Posted by on Nov 21, 2008 in At TMV | 2 comments

Google SearchWiki: Customize Your Search Results

The Official Google Blog:

Today we’re launching SearchWiki, a way for you to customize search by re-ranking, deleting, adding, and commenting on search results. With just a single click you can move the results you like to the top or add a new site. You can also write notes attached to a particular site and remove results that you don’t feel belong. These modifications will be shown to you every time you do the same search in the future. SearchWiki is available to signed-in Google users. We store your changes in your Google Account. If you are wondering if you are signed in, you can always check by noting if your username appears in the upper right-hand side of the page.

The changes you make only affect your own searches. But SearchWiki also is a great way to share your insights with other searchers. You can see how the community has collectively edited the search results by clicking on the “See all notes for this SearchWiki” link.

I’m not sure whether or how I’m going to use it.  Michael Arrington doesn’t much like it:

Google says they’ve created a way to customize search results, and share (via the comments). They say they are striving to improve the search experience, and giving people tools to make search even more useful to them in their daily lives.

But Google search wasn’t broken. It’s one of the few things on the Internet that isn’t. I love it, as does 62% of everyone on the Internet. This new stuff is a mess of arrows and troll comments and stuff moving around the page. That doesn’t make my search experience more useful. It makes it move to another search engine.

My guess is they’ve made the changes to see what kind of data they get, and how it can be used to make their overall search results better. So when Google says “The changes you make only affect your own searches,” I think they’re only being half-truthful. All this data, in aggregate, will certainly be used to improve Google search results in general… Google, I’m begging. Please pull a Lively and get rid of this thing fast.

Lively was Google’s 3-D online environment. Google announced today that it would pull the plug on December 31. More here.

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