One box to search them all! Dreamed 4212 days ago | | 606 words

I was listening to Mac Break Weekly over my lunch break today and something that was mentioned got me thinking. When you go to lookup facebook, myspace, or wikipedia do you type in the URL or do you simple search it in google?

For the most part, I type in the URL and go straight to the page. However, I have had my moments where I search “wikipedia” especially instead of going straight to it. I can’t explain the compulsion to let the all-mighty Google find everything for me. However, I have a habit of typing search terms into the address bar as well. So perhaps it’s just simple dyslexia on my part.

Google

Though I think it’s more than just that. Google made themselves into the portal that Yahoo, Lycos, Infoseek (now resolves to Disney’s Go.com) and the rest of the 90’s portal sites wanted to be.

Instead of throwing everything under the sun at you all at once, they were smart. They gave you a box. One box. Look for what you want, you can quite literally get to anything from there. The web is yours for the taking. Just enter some text and hit go(ogle)!

Yahoo!

I have never understood why so many companies want to force every possible option down your throat at the get-go. The same thing as walking into a store and immediately being descended upon by the “helpful salespeople” trying to assist your shopping experience. Now I don’t know about you, but I like to have some time to get what I came for and if I have a question, I’ll come to you! Let me shop in peace.

Lycos

Similarly, I went to your site for some reason. Don’t throw 16 other things in my face. I know what I’m here for and if I think of something else, I’ll get to it. I can only do one thing at a time anyway. Telling me the latest celebrity gossip, what new movies are getting panned, there’s violence in the middle east, and the newest gadget to buy will just confuse and annoy me. Let me get in, get out and get on with life.

Ask

Ask seems to have recently gotten a clue. Perhaps it’s their advertising campaign against Google.

I still think Ask’s biggest fault was to ditch the butler. It was unique. It was memorable. It’s gone now. Ask is too generic a term and not a memorable brand or site.

Going forward, it will be interesting to see the split between The Google/Ask aesthetic of simple, box and a few linked front page versus the Yahoo/Infoseek/Lycos behemoths that try to bring you the entire world in 8 seconds.

I hope there is a shift towards simplifying the original experience. Much as Google had done with their iGoogle alternative. You still have the stark white front page, but you can opt for more options and toys if you so choose.

That is going to be the deciding factor in being successful and being bought out and gutted in the information game.

Poor Infoseek…
Infoseek (Go)

You used to be my favorite search engine for your “search within results” option. Now, all systems are not Go! You’re Go(ne). And Go(ogle) is the new kid on the block.

iGoogle

At the end of the day, I prefer the iGoogle to any of the behemoths. It gives me exactly what I want. Nothing more, nothing less because my “exactly what I want” changes. You can’t make one size fit all, but you can make a size flexible enough to fit most.

Comment

  1. Nils · Dec 5, 05:45 PM · #

  2. peroty · Dec 5, 08:13 PM · #

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