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Ask HN: Review my app again? Short domain name search (nxdom.com)
73 points by jcrocholl on Jan 25, 2010 | hide | past | favorite | 34 comments

I really like the new setup. It's much less confusing than it was before.

I've used it every few days since you first announced it here - it's pretty fun to play around with.

I don't know how feasible it is to do this, but instead of prefix and suffix, I would really like to be able to use wildcards in my search. For example, say I'm looking for a domain that starts with the word "dog" and ends with "cat" or "cats"; I would like to be able to search "dog*cat?" instead of 2 boxes over 2 searches (one for the "cat" suffix and one for the "cats" suffix).

I third the wildcard and make it represent multiple missing letters, not just one letter per wildcard.

I'd like to second this request. I absolutely adore your search engine but regex/wildcards would be the cherry on top.

Doesn't hurt that I'm in the market for a domain. :D

Edit: Can you add purchasing in-page? Perhaps eventually add one-click purchasing? It'd be an obvious way to monetize and add convenience.

It looks like there is a bug when using the prefix and suffix fields together.

Entered "ns" in the prefix field and saw a bunch of domains. Added "ing" to the suffix field and nothing showed up. I figured the site was just slow until I realized that it wasn't going to refresh.

Cleared "ing" and typed "g" in the suffix field. Showed results. Then added an "n" just before the "g" to get "ng". Less results than before as expected. Then added an "i" just before the "ng" to get "ing".

That gave me a list of domains starting with "ns" and ending in "ing".

(Using Firefox 3.5.7 if that matters)

Yes, I know the combined prefix and suffix search doesn't work properly yet. The reason is that the App Engine datastore doesn't support fancy search, only sorting with custom indexes. All results for a GQL query must be adjacent in the index. The indexes for combined prefix+suffix search are still building but should be ready in a few days.

Until that happens, you could reduce it to a single field and show results for both types of searches. I found the prefix/suffix thing pretty confusing.

Actually, I have now enabled the search indexes for the following prefix+suffix combinations: 4+1, 3+2, 3+1, 2+1, 2+2, 1+1, 1+2, 1+3, 2+3, 1+4. I may add longer combinations later, but for now they will be shortened and filtered, e.g. 5+3 will use cached 4+1 and then filter the results in the browser with JavaScript.

Spectacular, and FAST!

One small note, from my experience: it wasn't immediately obvious that results would appear right away, partly because of the drop down and submit button at the bottom.

Was yours the site with the numbers to weight the score along the top for each column? As a geek, I far preferred that because I had more control. As someone looking at this with the eye of your average user, this system is better. A bit like comparing vi and Textmate, I guess.

Yes, that was the previous version that I announced here on January 1st. I figured that usability is more important than fine-grained control over the score weights, because the sort order is not terribly critical. Basically, the user should be able to adjust the trade-off between short and popular names. But it's a brainstorming tool, we're not trying to get one particular name to the very top of the list.

Great project, congratulations.

I am still curious about one aspect: why do you realease the source code? (same question for browsershots).. I think for such a service the vast majority is not interested in the backend code and those who are interested might take it and build a competing product, not being required to release the modified code. Am I missing something? What is your take on this ?

Good question, so I wrote a blog post: http://nxdom.posterous.com/why-is-nxdom-open-source

Thanks for the answer, I agree with all your points. I'm just saying that still, there is a small technical difference from open source desktop software: technically, in this case, I can not verify that the source code you release is exactly the code that you are running on the server, just that the code reproduces all the "visible" functionality of the site. I wonder if there exists such a place for hosting trusted web-apps, where one could publish source code and they would certify that the actual code running on the server is the same.

Again, I'm not saying you should do anything differently, I'm just trying to understand if open source makes sense for pure web apps.

Please add Gandi.net as a registrar, they're by far my favourite and I know other people have similar strong views.

It's very awesome.

One thing that would be very cool... is regex support? :D

But barring that, a "contains" box. I.e. if I don't care if the website starts with cat or ends with cat, as long as cat is in there somewhere.

Maybe I'm not understanding how it should work, but I'm not getting a lot of results. For example try to enter something crazy / random in the beginning, like "kqxj" you get no results. Even for something like ending in "hedule" (since there seems to be a bug if you type in more than 5 characters) only a few entries are shown for domains that end in "schedule"... It's pretty fast though.

The site searches a database consisting mostly of recently-expired domains, so it's not likely to contain any given random string.

I really like it, really simple to use and fast like other people said. In fact, I found a great name related to my main project that I'm going to snap up.

The first time around though, I didn't notice that I could pick my preferred registrar at the bottom to get you the referral. Maybe that should default to empty and ask your preferred registrar on a domain click if it's blank? Just a thought.

Love the simplicity and quality of the site. I like the "How can we improve this page" everywhere. It is nice to see a constant message of trying to improve and making it drop dead simple to send feedback.

Above all though, the speed of the lookups is impressive. So many other tools are slow and clunky.

In IE7, the CSS is being completely ignored and the page does not work (Note: I am behind a proxy, it might have something to do with it). It works with Firefox.

Also, I know of a domain, seventypercentwater.com, but it doesn't show up in the list when I search for "seventy". What am I missing?

Hi, since you already have lots of country-specific TLDs, I suggest you to add .br, or more specifically, ".com.br". I'm not sure on how you could profit from it, but I bet you can get some traffic from here.

Great app, found it from your first go-round here and obviously is much cleaner visually.

Would be nice to be able to only check certain extensions without losing too many points (.ly or .us only)

So useful, thank you.

Fantastic work! Just curious, why does it not return any results for long strings?

For example, putting "hacker" in the Beginning box and "ne" in the Ending box yields no results.

Because it's a search engine for short names, using a large database of unused and expired domain names. Try searching for "hack" + "ne", or "hack" + "e" for even more results.

I didn't set any prefix or suffix and instead just selected all the radio buttons. Now I get it, but at first I was confused why no results are coming up.

I like it very much, ive used bustaname before, but I think ill try this one too next time I buy a domain.

Simply awesome. I must have used every single domain name search app there is and this is by far the best

This is amazing work. Congratulations.

Want to start a dating site? everymate.com is available

How about an Aussie-targeted site for finding drinking buddies? :-P

Idk what else to say except Awesome :D

no .cm ending. Otherwise good. Left sidebar looks weird in Chrome.

Bookmarked, thanks!

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