Having said that. There can be too much of a good thing. I feel that HN is being used as an advertising platform to promote DDG, which in itself is not such a bad thing when there are major developments and exiting features and news about it once in a while. So can we try to go easy on this promotional bandwagon?
...because clearly, those are the only choices.
As long as we're throwing around false dichotomies, I'd rather see 10 more articles about the internals of a search engine than one more rah-rah post about DDG.
If you have some indices on your servers, how do you build and search them? Is it your own technology, or open source (Xapian, Lucene-based, etc)? In what percent of searches do you display results from your own indices?
Gabriel could do one too if he feels like it.
Of course those are not the only two choices (there were three of them, buy hey, who is counting), but since they seem to be the most prevalent posts that irritate me I figured I'd put my personal preference out there. If you want a longer list I can provide one but I don't think it will make the point much clearer.
Now you're just being petty. There are plenty of technical articles that languish in "new" every day -- I've submitted more than than a few, and I vote for many others.
An argument against other types of fanboy spam is not an argument for DDG fanboy spam.
Just like patio11's stuff is a case study in how it is done, so is this, with one huge difference, I can't see myself ever buying a set of bingo cards but I can definitely see myself using a search engine, if only for comparison purposes.
I could say with just as much justification that I'd not like to ever hear a word about bingo cards again, but I don't think that is right because the bingo cards serve as an illustration on how to run a successful startup.
The other stuff is the fanboy stuff. And that I could do without, hence my preference for DDG articles.
But I promise I will write an article about the guts of a search engine, I built a small one about 5 years ago and maybe there are some interesting bits that warrant dissection.
Based on the information I have found about the project the only area I can see this competing is in the user experience (scrolling results, encrypted search etc). Maybe someone who knows more about the project can enlighten us.
Here's what's coming:
--Stack Overflow, man pages & programming documentation in 0-click.
--More programming !bangs; I've already added a bunch but would love more suggestions: http://duckduckgo.com/bang.html
--More goodies; I've added a lot recently (color codes, regexp, more advanced math to wolfram alpha, today unicode); again, suggestions welcome: http://duckduckgo.com/goodies.html
I often don't think about the specifics of what I want until I've started typing, then I realize, "Oh, I actually want the wikipedia page of this." So I have to Ctrl-A to the beginning and type !w [space].
It's not a big hassle, but it'd be great if I could skip that step.
In addition to, not instead of. (And why not just allow it anywhere in the terms?)
I like seeing that my previous search was a ! search in my ff search bar. If it's a long search term I wouldn't see it at the end.
It is very easy to perform shallow parsing operations on English, because of its relatively simple morphology. However, for agglutinative languages like Turkish, (Finnish, Hungarian and Japanese are also in the same family) where stems can appear under too many forms to enumerate, basic shallow parsing algorithms would not produce as interesting search results.
My anecdotal experience with DDG in Turkish seems to go in line with that assumption. So, I think DDG has a lot room for improvement in processing languages with complex morphology.
A famous illustrative Turkish word is:
...which decomposes to suffixes as follows:
...and translates to english as follows:
behaving as if you(plural) are among those whom we could not cause to become civilized
I wonder if Google has ever considered a similar interface for their search results.
The big question is how Gabriel will scale DDG with the design decisions already made.
It's quite possible that DDG can get to profitability with the layout the way it is today, maybe not as profitable as google but I don't think that would matter much.
Making a step back in income is a lot harder than foregoing a certain amount of income from the start.
This seems unnecessarily constraining. They already allow you change your preferences to see 100 results per search instead of the default. How does this fit with your logic?
Certainly Google is very concerned with click-through on ads, but I'm not sure they'd be losing much if they allowed continuous scrolling. What percentage of their revenue do you think they derive from ads placed on 'next' pages?
And certainly there would be some way that they could integrate more ads with the Ajax loads: adding them to the sidebar as you scroll, or otherwise integrating them with the incrementally added results.
That nobody except for a few geeks do it. Just like the 'I feel lucky' button.
> Certainly Google is very concerned with click-through on ads, but I'm not sure they'd be losing much if they allowed continuous scrolling. What percentage of their revenue do you think they derive from ads placed on 'next' pages?
About 32% according to their own statistics. 68% of the clicks (ads or results) are on page 1, the rest on subsequent pages.
Google is working hard to get to the point where 100% of the clicks are done on the first page, then it is a moot point, but a 32% impact to their bottom line is not something they'll do if they don't have to.
Also, yes, they could load that ad again, but I suspect that may not be as effective and would lead to a lot of complaints. A 'quiet' (as in non-animated) page creates a lot of goodwill, switching ads would likely lead to a distraction and therefore diminished user experience.
Personally, I don't like the AJAX update approach. I'd much rather that a site just give me a long list of results, and allow me to scroll through them without loading delays. If I could set Google to return 1000 results, it would feel about right.
I think that is a balance between server load and user convenience.
On ddg it is already pretty fast, if you aren't in a real hurry it is hardly noticeable and faster than clicking through to a second page.
> That nobody except for a few geeks do it. Just like the 'I feel lucky' button.
Why don't they offer this as an option then, by the same logic?
edit: so much for my memory, it costs them almost twice that, 110 million per year, source:
It's great, except it would slow down Firefox notably for me. I haven't tried out the Chrome version.
Now, saying that it is good for programming questions made me set it as the default search engine without even testing.
Zero-click info is amazing for quick doc checks, the auto-extending page is sweet and actually displaying the page link and favicon is a lot more informative.
Two things though:
- It's slow. Maybe because I'm in South America, or the server is not that good, but speed is essential for a search engine.
- Special characters are not always handled correctly. A* work perfectly, but the situation is inverted when it comes to "@". Google's results for @override (http://www.google.com/search?q=@override) are better than DDG's (http://duckduckgo.com/?q=@override).
Special character handling will be much better as I index programming documentation and Stack Overflow with the special characters.
Not a huge problem. It works most times when I use it. But it's not quite Google yet.
Well ... they are now