Gataga - Social bookmark search and exploration engine is a meta-search tool for social bookmark managers.
There are many popular social bookmark managers on the web (all with a great sharing community base), Gataga leverages all these services and lets you search across them all in one go…how’s that for discovery!
Of course this is a different search tool to many other meta-search engines as it is not searching everything on the web, it is only searching a portion of the web.
The portion of the web it searches can be referred to the human-indexed web (pages saved by people who use the various social bookmark services indexed by Gataga).
In this respect you can search a cleaner version of the web, websites that matter, of course though there is no comparison to the recall of traditional web engines, but the precision is competitive in it’s own style.
On the web precision is achieved using phrase, boolean searching, on Gataga precision is more effortless as you are searching in a subject field by default…so the precision is half way there before you even search as the webpage has been tagged with an aboutness label
…you can also add tags together.
I guess you could say it is a subject field search engine, something the web tried to be to start with, but now the users are defining the subject…hooray!
So I gather they are ranking results similar to Google, as well as utilising tags (usually subject descriptors) as a major player in ranking results.
Now I’m not sure if Gataga is searching for tags or within tags.
ie. Enter a search term and it shows you a list of results that have that tag
…or does it also search in the title field, comments field, any other fields, or even full-text (only for services that cache, like Furl and Spurl), so a result may in-fact not even have the search term as a tag.
A search query in Furl may produce a hit that doesn’t neccessarily have that term as a tag, but the term may be in the title or full-text, and was considered relevant.
I also noticed that they have a link near the search box called “search by tag”…maybe this means you are only searching in the tag field (similar to subject searching)
…and the main search may be searching in numerous fields.
I wonder how results are ranked in both these search options.
How do you rank the “search by tag”, it must just show the latest bookmark with that tag first, and so on…as all bookmarks with a particular tag will have exactly equal relevance.
An interesting measure would be to search with boolean in different fields.
Eg. blog (tag field) AND library (all fields)
blog (tag field) AND library (title field)
I wonder what the quality of these two searches would be compared to a search you can already perform in Gataga…I think.
Eg. blog AND library (tag field)
Other similar meta-tag search services:
Searches for tags and returns a list of results of items with that tag.
Results are shown by service and not blended, not sure how they are sorted.
Results include blog categories, but the web page also lists results from a few bookmark managers…this again searches for tags and returns a list of results of items with that tag.
Much of this has been covered in an earlier post.