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Million Short (millionshort.com)
110 points by fortran77 17 days ago | hide | past | web | favorite | 33 comments

People often cite DuckDuckGo or Reddit search as popular alternatives to Google. A few other little known ones that go well alongside Million Short:

* https://wiby.me

* https://www.mojeek.com

* Personal fave: https://pinboard.in/search/

* Also, google "<keywords> site:are.na"

Wouldn't use these necessarily for finding an answer to a programming question. More: to find unusual blogs/wikis, to search topics that are full of ad spam on Google or to just explore in the ancient practice of web surfing.

Reddit search (or adding site:reddit.com to Google queries) is extremely useful for product reviews, travel advice, etc. Google used to have a Discussions tab, which served a similar purpose, but they dropped it and many searches show the same information repeated N times.

I feel like I'm losing more and more faith in Reddit reviews/conversations.

As the site has been growing, I feel like there are increasesd amounts of astroturfing going on. Maybe I'm being overly paranoid, or maybe I've visited r/hailcorporate too many times. However, consider this - reddit is a huge website with a lot of reach, where it's free to post. Even better than that, you can control discussions if you're a moderator. This means you can advertise comparatively cheaply, in a way that looks genuine and reach a wide, desirable audience with your message.

Would you be surprised if there are whole businesses that specialise in creating positive content about brands on reddit? I would be shocked if there weren't.

Yeah the thing with reddit is you always have to take everything there with a huge grain of salt.

Especially because every non-expert thinks they are an expert, and if you aren't familiar with the subject matter, it can be difficult to spot

Can't even recall all the times I've posted on a topic I'm strongly well-versed in on reddit and ended up downvoted. It's very frustrating when something you know to be a fact is downvoted in favor of some popular conception of truth.

Some subreddits, like /r/askhistorians, have famously draconian moderation policies, intended to keep the quality of responses high; or at least the top level responses.

One thing that I'm interested in is the politics subreddit. How is it that so many paid subscription sites hit the top of the subreddit so often? I've never seen the popularity of subscription sites, and the lack of objection towards a subscription site, in any other internet forum.

On hackernews- there are rarely subscription sites- and when there is, the first comment is typically how to view for free. Likewise with literally every other forum I frequent.

It's particularly interesting in a /r/politics subreddit that is fairly anti-capitalist

I think post titles in /r/politics are better understood as writing prompts for outrage rather than actual article headlines. Can’t get hit by the paywall if you don’t click the link.

No doubt a lot of astroturfing goes on, that happens on any forum, but there's also sufficient checks in place (replies, voting, and moderation) to make the results still more useful than typical search results.

You might be surprised how easy it to game those checks if either the mods aren't extremely active or, worse, if they're incentivised to support certain posts/views.

ecosia is a good alternative to get some trees planted https://info.ecosia.org/about

After setting three filters on my first query, I was already hit with a captcha. That seems a bit aggressive and unfortunately ensured I didn't add this one to my search engine bookmarks.

Why can’t you do a captcha?

Why would anyone be willing to do captchas? It is just a waste of time for regular users. I also had a similar experience when I searched for many different queries in such a short time, I got hit by captchas for a while.

What other ways would you recommend them to use to distinguish your “many different queries in a short time” from automated bot attacks, etc.?

I am not a DoS/spam expert but first things come to mind are : - Google account credibility (I have a very old Google account and this should provide me some trust from Google's perspective) - Malicious word analysis in search queries - Browser/device information to determine authenticity of the search (if I am at home or connecting over a Tor network) - Gradually increase the response time for the queries On top of those, Google is a machine learning company and I am sure this process should be automated by now without requiring filling of any active captchas.

If DuckDuckGo gave me a captcha on every search I'd be giving Google several hours of my time per week solving them. Search is such a common operation, the time needed to perform one needs to be as low as possible.

Well, you got what you paid for...

Honestly if I could pay Google to revert whatever they did to their engine $5 - $20 a month for better searching and absolutely no bubble or tracking WHATSOEVER I would. I would pay roughly the same to any competitor.

I just want to go back in time to where Google found the code I was looking for. Seems to be after they started filtering results strictly and trying to maintain a bubble around specific users.

I pay for a JetBrains annual subscription to all their IDEs I would gladly pay for a search engine that only filters out whats illegal to a reasonable extent (piracy filters shouldnt be extremely aggresive to where it cripples everything).

Because I shouldn't be seeing it in the first place.

No word on where the search results come from?

Can't find anything about it on the about page.

Doing a few test searches, the results seem similar to those of Bing.

It's usually Bing, AFAIK they are the only one that offer a whitelabel/API solution.

There were a bunch of founders in the search category at startupschool 2018 and 2019, those that I spoke to all used Bing as that was their only viable option according to them.

Seems like an interesting idea.

There's a huge problem with this website, though. It's a search engine and the most prominent thing on the page is a giant picture of some people.

Put the search box, writ large, right in the middle of the page! Not only is it the "language" of search engines, but it's a simple and obvious accessibility win. I'm sure the people all matter to each other, but not to the end user.

Also, if the goal is to eliminate top search results, why not set "exclude top million" as the default option? By default it's currently just a worse Bing. If your mission statement is to get people outside of the Big Tech Bubble, it seems silly in the extreme not to have that as a default.

Re: the first point, OP is actually a link to the /about page. The front page works as you expect.

Ah, that's good then!

Filtering out e-commerce sites is a great idea. Is there a way I can do this on DuckDuckGo ?

My reaction is that this is not what the world needs. The world needs a research tool, not a way to poor over thousands of low ranked sites. How about sliders for date ranges? Yippy.com has some nice enrichment filters that I find useful.

I love the low ranked sites. I tend to use it regularly to search for more obscure electronics topics that are otherwise contaminated by reviews, unboxing videos and stackoverflow questions without answers. It's quite helpful to lead me to personal pages of some internet rando who provides in depth information for what I'm looking for.

"highly ranked" is no longer a proxy for useful research sites, which is the entire point of this alternative search site and others. In fact being highly ranked by google is starting to feel like it has an inverse correlation to research-usefulness.

What I would love to see is an option for reverse ranking with thresholds: sites and pages listed in order reverse to their popularity, within custom limits.

For example, I'd love to be able to search for "what to do in <city of my choice>" among sites, say, in the middle 50% of popularity, sorted top-to-bottom and bottom-to-top. My intention would be to find more personal pages and websites with sincere, non-manufactured recommendations.

That would be real search.

Would be great if it had video, image, and other search result types.

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