[LINK] TEOMA - an alternative to GOOGLE
oleary at alphalink.com.au
Wed May 28 06:49:13 EST 2003
From the ASK JEEVES people:
Search Engines know that users rarely go beyond the first three items in
the results page. The relevancy of the returns begins to fall off very
fast after the third item (50% is the cutoff line.) So they are trying to
improve the relevancy.
Teoma has a different approach from Google.
Google's problem is that if you search for, say, hammer, you'll get three
million hits. The word "hammer" is not placed in a context. MC Hammer,
household hammer, snowboard hammer, etc, all are equivalent.
Teoma considers the web (some three billion pages are indexed)(out of some
five billion pages) to be in clusters of information. One cluster is
whatever has to do with philosophy, another cluster is Colin Powell,
another cluster is cats, and so on. When you search for something, it shows
you several clusters so you can then click on a group and then see only
pages within that cluster.
Another remarkable thing about Teoma: it holds the entire web in RAM.
Memory is extremely cheap now and it works in nanoseconds (billionth of a
second) instead of harddisk speeds, which operate in milliseconds
(thousandth of a second.) RAM-based memory is a million times faster than
hard disk memory. So when you do a search on Teoma, it searches the entire
web and structures it into a new set of clusters for every single search.
It's not a static collection of clusters.
Google is very anxious about Teoma. Google has invested heavily into
hardware; they have over 54,000 servers (they add something
like 30-50 per day). At the moment, Google rules the search market; they
handle 75% of all searches. But a better idea (namely, a search engine that
delivers better results in the first three items) can turn those 54,000
servers into boat anchors.
oleary at strategos.com.au
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