Custom search

Lorcan 1 min read

It is nteresting to see the quick take-up of the custom search engine from Google. Here are some examples that have come over my horizon in the last few days:

  • OpenDOAR is a directory of academic open access repositories based at the University of Nottingham. They have implemented a search across the contents of the repositories they list. As they point out, this search is based on whatever Google has indexed of the repository content, which in turn depends on local implementation/configuration details.
  • Peter Murray put up a search of Dan Chudnov’s Planet Code4Lib blogs.
  • Bill Drew has created a Google custom search across his collection of wireless resources:

    I have been working on my Google custom search engine for WLANs and Libraries. It is available at I have integrated the LibWireless list into using the gmane port of the list. It also searches Webjunction, PublicIP.Net, WLAN Central, Wireless Libraries blog, and my old Wireless Librarian website. I am working on finding a way to include library hotspots from JiWire and other sources. [Baby Boomer Librarian: Google Custom Search for WLANs and Libraries]

  • And checkout the Law Library Search Engine.

This seems like a pretty significant move by Google which creates real value. It is interesting to look at it in the context of network flow. The other day, I noted Hitwise’s analysis of how Wikipedia channeled a signficant amount of traffic to sites which were downstream of it. At the same time, Wikipedia received quite a bit of traffic from Google, upstream of it. How people move around the web is becoming more interesting.
Custom search looks like a good way of gathering more upstream traffic by placing the ability to search in many more places. The flow to Google will be increased by placing relevant searches in the user flow.
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