I’ve run across two new search engines recently, both of which share a new take on Internet searching: fewer, but more useful results.
The first is Bing, the new search engine from Microsoft. Although often caught playing catch up, some say Microsoft may actually have something that does the competition “one better” here. Why? Because it makes assumptions and provides slimmed-down, allegedly more useful information. For example, searching for a band name provides automatic links to information on tours, lyrics, albums, etc. Or, searching for a city name has links to attractions, travel, hotels, etc. Yes, Google has some of this functionality (and even some Bing doesn’t, like the ability to automatically see showtimes in your area when searching for a movie name), but Bing makes it almost the centerpiece of search—not an afterthought.
The second I found via a previous article on OmniNerd: Wolfram Alpha. I don’t want to re-hash the discussion there, so I’ll just say this site ignores the generic “search engine results” entirely as it attempts to make “the world’s systemmatic knowledge computable.” Search for “population of Africa” and you’ll get graphs, tables and more—without another click.
So, is skipping straight to the presumed data the future of online searching? And if so, could it mean the end of Google’s dominance?
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