Monday, September 19, 2011

Blekko

Tired of irrelevant results on Google? Not excited about Bing? Try Blekko, a search engine that claims it's "slashing out spam, content farms, malware."

Blekko crawls 3 million "quality" websites, so in theory the results you get are relevant and authoritative. It's different from the other major search engines in that it allows you to use slashtags to specify kinds of searches and filter out unwanted websites. (The slashtag is the forward slash on your keyboard.) There is a directory of preset slashtag searches so you can get an idea of the kinds of specific searches Blekko has come up with, or try your own. For example, a search on jennifer aniston /movie will return movie-related sites only, no gossip sites or sites about other ladies named Jennifer Aniston who are not the Hollywood actress. You can create your own slashtags or edit current ones if you create an account.

To get an idea of how Blekko works, try the same searches I suggested in my posts about Bing and Yahoo. First, type in your hometown. How do the results differ and how are they the same? with Blekko you can sort by relevance or date, and you can also have it show only images or videos.

For the second test, play 3 Engine Monte. This is kind of a game where you do a search and add the slashtag /monte in order to get results from three search engines (Google, Bing, and Blekko but in random order). You choose which set of results you like best, and Blekko will show you which search engine returned it. This way, you can compare search engines and decide which one might be more consistent with the kinds of searches you do and the results you prefer. Again, to use the example from my previous post, try travel itinerary for new zealand /monte. Which search engine did you choose?

If you want to read more about Blekko, there are Help screens by clicking the link in the upper right. You can also see their Web Search Bill of Rights by clicking "About" from the list at the bottom of their search page.

Even if you have no desire to leave your favored search engine, give Blekko a try and see what you might be missing.

2 comments:

  1. Great post – I’m going to Tweet about your blog.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks! So have you used Blekko? What do you think about it?

    ReplyDelete