Roll your own search engine… sort of…



Several blog posts have heralded the arrival of Google’s newest toy, a custom search engine setup… sort of Through Google Coop you can design a search engine that only covers the sites you want it to cover (or favor, it can search the web and just be biased towards the sites you prefer.) Of course, this relies on googles existing index, so if a site has not been crawled and indexed by the googlebot, you seem to be out of luck. I’ve tried a test at http://www.southcarolinagenealogy.org/search for my North and South Carolina genealogy sites…. a merged search between the two would be handy…


But, the North Carolina site has been missing from Google for almost a year now for no reason that I’ve been able to interpret from the tea leaves…. including them in the search engine I made, didn’t magically turn up results for the North Carolina site, the only results come from the South Carolina site. But this does look like a good offering, you should just recognize the limitations are that if a site hasn’t been thoroughly crawled and indexed by google you may have spotty results. (This site has spotty indexing currently as well.)

Oh, and you can earn Adsense revenues from the results as well, so you can tie in to your adsense account. Where I see this really having promise is the idea of creating an “opt in” search engine of a variety of trusted sites. In theory, if that person had good judement, others would use that search engine for that topic and would be getting more relevant results. Not quite a directory, but human-cultivated results non-the-less.

It has interesting possibilities. I just wonder if having a custom search engine that covers a site could get it indexed? (In other words, since I’ve tried to do a search engine with the North and South Carolina genealogy sites, will the North Carolina site now start showing back up in the index (or at least in my custom search ?)

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