Search Engine

Overview Search engines are an essential part of the Internet. Visit Webopedia.com for a definition of search engine. There are numerous search engines available to the public, offering everything  from topic-specific searches to meta-searches that use multiple search engines to generate results. Today's most popular search engines use a variety of different methods to scour the Internet for information. These methods include Web bots, shared indexing, and site popularity and relevance ratings. Some search engines even search newsgroups and Web pages alike. With so many search choices available online, it might be difficult to choose the right one for your search topic. As a result of the proliferation of search engines today, many Web sites offer search engine reviews, statistics of usage, and other interesting metrics to rate search engine performance.

Search Engine Technology The technology behind many of today's search engines is developing all the time. A Metasearch engine is a search engine that connects to a multiple of other search engines to generate a single list of results. A spider is a Web-roaming program used to find documents pertaining to your search. Indexers are often used in conjunction with spiders to scan and rank documents returned by a spider. For a thorough look into the development of search technology over the last few years, visit this Web page. Here you will find explanations of many terms and ideas related to modern search engines. 

In recent years, a technology known as meta tags has been developed. Read a thorough description of a meta tag at foldoc.org. A meta tag allows Web designers to make their sites more visible to modern search engines. Keyword and content meta tags allow Web designers to insert keywords and descriptive phrases into the HTML code thus making it easier for search engines to find and index their site. Information and resources related to meta tags and their uses is provided on this http://searchenginewatch.com.

Popular Search Engines Below are just a few of the most popular, highly rated search engines. Each search site listed has unique search features and functions. 

Google (www.google.com) is currently the most popular search engine on the Internet. Google offers a large subject index and a unique way of using public feedback, popularity ratings, and keyword relevance to generate useful results. Google reportedly receives over 100 million search requests each day. 

Alta Vista (www.altavista.com) features three different search modes: simple, advanced, and “Power” search. Each mode uses a combination of Alta Vista's main index as well as other indexes. Alta Vista reportedly receives over 50 million queries per day. 

MSN (msn.com) uses the Inktomi database and Looksmart for its directory, allowing users to access one of the largest databases of indexed Web pages. MSN is one of the most frequently used search sites, receiving 40 to 50 million “hits” each day. For more information about other popular search engines that use the Inktomi database, follow this link

Dogpile (www.dogpile.com) is a metasearch engine that organizes search results from many popular search engines. It works by sending out a query to several search engines. Once the results are returned, they are compiled into one index. Dogpile is useful for general searching as well as for comparing results from different search engines. 

MetaCrawler (www.metacrawler.com/index.html) is another meta-search engine that features customizable searches, topic directories for specific search topics, and an option for information about MetaCrawler, which includes useful tips and tools. 

Yahoo! Search (search.yahoo.com) In 2004 Yahoo! Search became an original web crawler-based search engine, with a reinvented crawler called Yahoo! Slurp. This new technology is the result of combining technology from Inktomi and Overture Services, Inc. (AlltheWeb, AltoVista) which it acquired in 2002-2003.

Search Engine Resources, Reviews, and Statistics Because of the numerous search engines available to the Internet user, many sites offering search engine resources, reviews, and statistics about popular search engines and other general information, have sprung up in the last few years. The All Search Engines site (www.allsearchengines.com) is an excellent source for finding extensive lists of popular, new, and topic-specific search engines. It also offers links to other search engine resources on the Internet. The site www.searchengines.com not only performs searches, but also adds search features to Web sites. It is used for the most part by Web developers and designers. Additional information for Web designers can be found at www.searchenginewatch.com. Here you will also find recent articles about search engines, tips on how to use them, and reviews and ratings of some of the most popular search engines. This site offers search resources sorted by country or region, and draws from over 1200 search engines. And finally, at www.notess.com/search, you will find many search resources such as reviews, statistics about popular search engines, search news, and tips.