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Thursday, September 30, 2004

Vivisimo's Clusty Offers Blog Search Engine

Clusty is a new search engine from Vivisimo that cluster search results as well as offering a selection of tabs including the standard web, news images but also new tabs such as gossip, eBay, Slashdot and blogs.

Enter a search into the blog search engine and it queries Blogdigger, Blogpulse, Blogstreet, Bloogz, Daypop, Feedster and Technorati. A search for A Welsh View on the blog part of the search engine brings up just results from blogs but peppered throughout the results are links for Blogdigger (about every other 3 or 4 links).

The eBay search tab is great to have. For example, search for a product and you can find out information about it on the web tab, checkout new products on the shopping tab and then see if you can find it cheaper on eBay.

Is this a real competitor for Google? The NYTimes has more about the search engine.

Update: Scott Rafer, President of Feedster, points out that Clusty, which is a meta search engine and not a search engine as I originally posted, "in violation of absolutely everyone's terms of service".

Vivisimo's President spoke to Scott back in February asking if they could add Feedster to their blog clustering demo. Scott said yes providing...

1. no metasearch without further discussion
2. explicit credit on the search returns page
3. use our RSS search feeds not our html

Clusty is a meta-search engine, offers no credit to Feedster and uses their HTML. Maybe Clusty's not so good after all.

Update 2: Scott Rafer informs me that he did agree with Vivisimo's President, Raul, that he did agree to meta-search but the other two stand. Raul is being upfront and helpful about the other two issues and Scott is confident that they will be ironed out.


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Scott Rafer

Actually, they are offering a blog meta-search engine in violation of absolutely everyone's terms of service. If you do a blog search for "debates" and click on the Details link, you get:
Top 193 results retrieved for the query debates (Details)
These sources have been queried: (Click anywhere to close)
Blogdigger - Top 38 results retrieved in 0.575s, 38 requested. (1 page requested - 1 OK)
Blogpulse - Top 38 results retrieved in 6.476s, 38 requested. (1 page requested - 1 OK)
Blogstreet - No result retrieved in 3.679s, 38 requested. (1 page requested - 1 OK)
Bloogz - Top 38 results retrieved in 3.308s, 38 requested. (4 pages requested - 4 OK)
Daypop - Top 5 results retrieved in 10.706s, 38 requested. (1 page requested - 1 partial)
Feedster - Top 38 results retrieved in 10.235s, 38 requested. (1 page requested - 1 OK)
Technorati - Top 38 results retrieved in 0.675s, 38 requested. (2 pages requested - 2 OK)

Clusty's search comes back in about 5 secs, so I don't see how they think Feedster took 10, but oh well. Their President called me in February 2004 asking me if they could use Feedster's results to do a blog clustering demo. I said yes, but 1) no metasearch without further discussion, 2) explicit credit on the search returns page, 3) use our RSS search feeds not our html. They are using our HTML and taking the ads and branding off.

Scott Rafer

Raul, the prez at Vivissimo (Clusty's owner), called me this morning. He's got an email trail of ours that I couldn't find last night. I did agree to metasearch in February, so my bad on that one. The other bits still hold, but he's being VERY upfront and friendly about it. I'm sure we'll work them out.

I would appreciate it if you could update your post again. That way it will trickle through the same RSS channels that Raul stepping up and taking care of things appropriately.

K.G. Schneider

I think this is a case of Raul having two or three lattes too many before rolling this out. He and I spoke... gee, last year? I'm not even opposed to the idea that LII is included in this service; I think it's cool. But, er, I would have liked a heads-up (if he's talked to me, he knows how to reach me, yessssss?), and we have just plain dumb luck that we're on our new network and server. The Olden LII would have gone belly-up. Plus how can I send him an LII tote bag if he's being so coy? Come on, Raul, talk to me, baby...

Karen G. Schneider
Director, Librarians' Index to the Internet

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