In Search of Better Ways to Search

Google, Microsoft, Ask.Com Quietly Use Spinoff Sites To Test New Features, Solicit Feedback; Pulling Up Videos

By JESSICA E. VASCELLARO
Wall Street Journal
January 17, 2007; Page D1

Dave’s Comments (Digital Marketing Tutorial Blog): Take a peek at the major search engines’ ideas for the next generation of search via this Wall Street Journal Online article. Why should Web Marketers care? Because with expanded search results will come expanded methods of marketing to these searchers. You’ll need to be a WSJ Online subscriber to read the article.

Here are the Home Pages of the main next-generation search engines discussed in this article:
SearchMash.com (Google property)
Ask X (Ask property)
AllTheWeb Live Search (Yahoo property)
MsDewey.com (Microsoft Windows Live property)

“Kevin McCarty, long a devout Google user, recently discovered a search engine he often finds more helpful. It’s called SearchMash.com, and unlike Google and other major search sites, it pulls up video, images and text all at the same time.

“I absolutely hate having to go from page to page to get a combination of image and Web results,” says Mr. McCarty, a 42-year-old computer consultant in Nashville, Tenn. “SearchMash saves lots of time.”

It turns out, though, that SearchMash is Google. In recent months, the top search engine and its main rivals have stealthily set up a new generation of search engines where they try out new tools and features on consumers — without putting their tried-and-true formulas at risk. If something proves to be a hit — the combined search results that Mr. McCarty likes so much, for instance — it could eventually be folded into the parent site. For now, though, these sites provide an entertaining and even useful glimpse into the evolution of Web, and in particular, search engines, which in their basic operation haven’t changed much in years.”

Read the entire WSJ article by visiting WSJ.COM (you’ll need to be a WSJ Online subscriber):