Monday 1 May 2006

Sphere is here

SphereToday I was just browsing through the net (just like any other day) and I realized that Google blogsearch wasn't the only one out there. First I must say that Sphere a San Fransisco based start up has a great site design, very intuitive and easily navigable and I absolutely love (well it's not perfect, but close enough) their gradient selection, it reminds me of the Visual Studio site. And by the looks of it since Google is looking out for more programmers I don't think their blog search is going to look as good as Sphere any time soon. The same goes for technorati, although technorati does seem to show only the most recent posts made by bloggers.

In ability to search through blogs is just as good. And I've actually got a couple of hits from Sphere already! Along with that all the posts are indexed from the past 4 months, so you can easily search through all the different posts I've put up. By default it only searches through the posts put up in the last week though however this can easily be changed by changing the setting to 'last four months'. Choosing the 'custom range' option is also a good way of getting more of what you want.

Choose as last four months
However, when I compared the search results with the Google Blogsearch Sphere didn't do all that well. For example I searched on 'iPod Shuffle Problems' one of the top posts in this blog on Blogsearch and my post was the 9th post. On Sphere it wasn't even there. Why? Because it wasn't indexed yet because this post was made a while ago... This experiment was also repeated on technorati (using normal settings) with similar results as Sphere, my post wasn't to be seen anywhere. Along with that for some reason technorati seemed to be down when I was trying to search.

So I guess it is safe to say that each have their own advantages and disadvantages... and Sphere might turn out to be the better one if they can do a great job of indexing (since right now they are out to get new servers I believe) and probably try to implement some light-weight AJAX (i.e. AJAX that doesn't take too much time to load) to give it a little web 2.0 pizzaz (but too much web 2.0 is bad as well). Therefore, right now I think Google Blogsearch is the best if you want to search through blogs in particular in general although results might vary.

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