Home The Top 100 Alternative Search Engines, April 2007

The Top 100 Alternative Search Engines, April 2007

This is the best list of Alternative Search Engines I have ever done. It has to be.
With each monthly update, several things happen that serve to improve the list. One, I
have spent a month – since the March
– scouring the World Wide Web for any brand new Search Engines (see Querycat) or ones that might have been missed (see Accoona). Two, several alternative search engines have
been added directly from readers’ comments to the last list (see younanimous; more on that later). And several
readers suggested a new category: Charity Search Engines; so that category has been added
and I placed a charitable search engine on this month’s list (see SearchKindly). I am also preparing an article that
looks at many of the Charity search engines that have recently sprung up. Finally,
another source of new alts comes from those leaving their alpha or “stealth” phase and
entering a Beta phase – or even fully launching; see the new Cydral (note: instructions are in French).

12 new search engines

In total, there are 12 new search engines this month (and 12, sadly, went “down to the
minors”). From the first
List in January
through to this one, there have been 160 Alternative Search Engines
in total!

I also try to improve the format and usefulness of the List every month. Last month I
incorporated your suggestion to add Categories to the List and
Excel spreadsheet
. This month I have added some more features. As you look over the
100 names, please note that there are fifty alts that have an asterisk (*) after their
name; this indicates that the search engine has been on all four lists from
January through April. I also added notes to remind you who was one of the ten
(throughout the year) featured Search Engines of the Month (see GoshMe and KoolTorch).

But the biggest change that I have made is in response to those readers who have noted
that 100 search engines is too many to check out! I guess in my heart I have always known
this, because if you spend just 10 minutes looking at each one, it will take you 16 hours
to complete! So this month I am inaugurating a brand new feature: in addition to the
Search Engine of the Month, I have marked with an (HM) ten Honorable Mentions! Try
to take the time to experiment with these this month. Every month I will designate
another ten; and so when December rolls around, you will have the absolute best Top 100
Alternative Search Engines; 90 Honorable Mentions; 10 Search Engines of the Month; and of
course the #1 Search Engine of the Year for 2007!

Search Engine of the Month: AfterVote

And now for the month of April, I am pleased to present the Search Engine of
the Month – younanimous! Or, as it has become, AfterVote!
One thing that I have noticed after looking at so many search engines is that
many fall into one of two camps. Either they present a fairly simple search box
with an “Advanced Search Preferences” link, which are essentially the
same routine filters (and very similar to Google’s). Or the Search Engine is
chock full of features which are intimidating for the first time user and
require a steep learning curve that few are willing to climb. AfterVote stops
the searcher right on the homepage and asks him or her to select their comfort
level. If they just want to do a quick and easy search, they can select
“Beginner” and AfterVote will only show them the essential tools. But
if the searcher desires to learn how to be a more skilled user, she can choose
“Intermediate” and AfterVote automatically responds with some more –
but not all – of its features. Finally, you guessed it, if you are an expert
searcher (and you know who you are), you don’t have to “dumb
down” when using AfterVote – just select “Advanced” and all of
their features will be at your disposal! And thanks to cookies, AfterVote will
even remember your “level” the next time you visit the site! But if
you’re curious, go ahead and select “Advanced” and take a look at all
of the cool buttons. You can select “Search Level” at any time and
pick another option.

This is not the place to go into a detailed tour of AfterVote, for that just
click on their blog and you can read
all about it. I do want to point out that AfterVote is the work of three guys
who also have regular jobs. It just goes to show that you don’t have to have a
million dollars in VC money to create a new search engine, just some great ideas
and a whole lot of work!

How AfterVote works – click
for larger screenshot

P. S. I will be in Italy when this is published, so I have asked Dan (of AfterVote)
and Richard (Read/WriteWeb Editor) to keep an eye on your comments. I will have to play
catch up when I get back, or you can send me an email at [email protected].

Special Announcement for Alternative Search Engines

Please follow this
to the Searchnomics Conference website and submit your search engine in their
competition. Then you can ask your users to vote for your site. The winner will be
announced – with much fanfare – at the Searchnomics conference in Santa Clara, California
on June 27th.

The List, April 2007

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