(May 2003 - March 2007.) Tama's thoughts on the blogosphere, podcasting, popular culture, digital media and citizen journalism posted from a laptop computer somewhere in Perth's isolated, miniature, urban jungle ...

Blog Search, Google's Answer to Technorati (in beta, naturally...)

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

There has been a lot of unhappiness with Technorati's speed and service recently, so what better time for Google to weigh in with a blogosphere specfic search site? That's right, a brand new (in beta, of course) Google engine ... Blog Search! Rather than being housed under the Google banner, Blog Search is housed at Blogger, which is probably a clever move to increase traffic to Google's blogging arm. The new Blog Search engine has both a Blogger and Google front-end. For a millisecond I thought it might be Blogger blogs only, but thankfully that mistake hasn't been made. Having a quick read of the Blog Search FAQ, things sound very promising:
Which blogs are included in Blog Search?

The goal of Blog Search is to include every blog that publishes a site feed (either RSS or Atom). It is not restricted to Blogger blogs, or blogs from any other service.

How do I get my blog listed?

If your blog publishes a site feed in any format and automatically pings an updating service (such as Weblogs.com), we should be able to find and list it. Also, we will soon be providing a form that you can use to manually add your blog to our index, in case we haven't picked it up automatically. Stay tuned for more information on this.

Why aren't my oldest posts listed?

Since Blog Search indexes blogs by their site feeds, it will only include items that have been posted since it started indexing a given blog. For most blogs, that will be around June 2005, or the time at which you submitted your blog
A quick test on Technorati's number one search right now, "Impeach Bush" and Blog Search returns 3,073 posts, while Technorati returns 2,848 posts. Interesting: I wonder which blogs Google knows about that Technorati doesn't? I'm sure others will get to a much more substantial testing, but for now things look pretty good.

All I really wanted was my Technorati Watchlist to load every time I click it. It still doesn't (about three quarters of the time I get a screen telling me Technorati is too busy), so Blog Search seems the answer (again from their FAQ):
Can I subscribe to search results?

Yes. At the bottom of each page of search results you can find several links, offering the top 10 or 100 results as either Atom or RSS feeds. Just grab the links from here and subscribe to them in the news aggregator of your choice and you will get updates whenever new posts are made that match your query.
And even RSS support, not just ATOM, so even Dave Winer should be happy! (Update: Okay, so Dave's not quite happy yet!)[Via Goldtoe]

Update: Microsoft blogspokesperson Scoble seems rather taken with Blog Search, although not everyone's happy.

Update 2: And Technorati welcomes Google to the blogosphere searchengine game with a bit of a back-handed compliment:
The blogosphere is abuzz with Google's launch of their Blog Search. So far things look pretty interesting, and having a big traditional search player like Google working on blog search is a validation moment for the entire blogosphere.

This will mark a major milestone for the World Live Web. At Technorati, we have a tremendous amount of respect for the Google team and for everything they've done in the world of search. I'm sure that they'll continue to improve over the coming months, perhaps including tags, recent images and links, zeitgeists, blogger tools, and other types of semistructured data. I'm sure that they'll also start indexing the full-text of blog posts, not just the partial text found in most blog feeds.

I welcome the competition. We've got some tricks up our sleeves too - and there's no doubt that in the end, the competition will end up producing more innovation and better services for bloggers and readers.
While that's a little "we still got the best stuff" from Technorati, there is a lot of specialist stuff that Google's Blog Search doesn't do ... yet. Personally, I would find a tag search function useful (although tags appear to be searched as text so far). Speaking of which, when is Blogger going to have internal support for tags and categories?!?

Update 3: Blogger Buzz notes a few sizable bugs with re-directs and Blog Search ignoring non-search (no robots) requests, but says they're being fixed within 24 hours. Update (The Last): They're fixed.

Update 4 (Really, the Last One!): It would appear that Google's Blog Search does indeed support a tag-search function, it's just not documented. From Fritz's comment below, it appears that using the operator "tag:" will indeed initiate a tag search in BlogSearch. A few experiments to show this working: kaynewest, kayne+west; these show that one-word ("kaynewest") and joined words ("Kayne+west" or "kayne west") return different results, but also that BlogSearch is definitely tag searchable. There's another Technorati-specific edge lost!

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At 9/14/2005 09:06:00 pm, Blogger John Lynch said...

Does this mean all of the blog posts will be removed from normal google searches? Oh if only we were so lucky ;)

Me, I avoid blog posts in my searches. I don't know why I'd want to search for them specifically.

At 9/14/2005 10:51:00 pm, Blogger Unknown said...

John, so far blog searches are still appearing in the main Google searches and I doubt that'll go away any time soon.

Avoiding blog posts in searches is a bit like only searching the news - the boundary between blogs, blog-like sites, RSS feeds (which, incidentally, is what Google's BlogSearch is actually searching, so probably includes non-blog sources) and other sites is a fuzzy boundary. More to the point, some blogs are as good if not better than their more elderly counterparts even in the news media (of course, there are millions of nazel-gazers as well who might not be what you're after!).

Personally, I find the blogosphere a better measure for many things, a point eloquently proven by the blogspherics regarding Katrina's Aftermath.

At 9/15/2005 10:45:00 pm, Blogger Rajesh said...

i'm in great need of your help i did'nt know how to contact you that's why i'm posting here...

it's a great template..

i'm also usnig this same template
i got u at

but i'm facing many problems like-
1)How to add authors name with the each post.
2)How to add picture with title..
3)how to have comment posting system like this one...
4)how to make different category for different posts..

so can you help me out..or post me the refined template..
i'll be very thankful to you..
Rajesh Kumar Rana

At 9/15/2005 11:43:00 pm, Blogger Unknown said...

1)How to add authors name with the each post.

That can be achived with the Blog Post Author tag from Blogger (<$BlogItemAuthor$>), for details click here.

2)How to add picture with title..

You need to find and edit the "kubrickheader.jpg" in the template, save yourself a local copy, edit that however you like, then post your copy online somewhere and use that copy in your template rather than the default one.

3)how to have comment posting system like this one...

This is a Blogger template, so you can't have exactly the same code used for WordPress but you could cut'n'paste the code from one of the new Blogger Templates blogs (eg Wedding) which is as close as I've seen in a freely available Blogger blog template.

4)how to make different category for different posts..

Short answer: you can't. Longer answer: you can use embedded tags using a script (eg Greywolf's bookmarklet) and then use the specific search options to only open posts with those tags through, for example, a Blog Search.

I, too, would love Blogger to implement tags and categories internally, but that day is yet to come...

Hope that helps!

At 9/16/2005 02:25:00 am, Blogger Rajesh said...


I realllyyyyyy very happyyy that you helped me...



you have solved my many questions....

i've got my own wordpress's blog..


thankyou very much...

Rajesh Kumar Rana....

At 9/18/2005 06:12:00 am, Blogger Yokota Fritz said...

Blogsearch tag support exists. See here.

I use blogger.com. I created this tool to ease tag generation.

At 9/18/2005 03:32:00 pm, Blogger lori said...

I was thinking that Google could almost endup being a MS in some ways, but I stopped myself thinking that.

Where Microsoft buys it's rivals and doesn't seem to do much development work at the moment, Google seems to develop tools, which eventually with enough development be better than their rivals.

At 10/30/2005 05:36:00 am, Anonymous Anonymous said...

check out our new rss and blog search enigine (plazoo.com) we got some uniue features. (still running in beta version)



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