full version Comparison Of Search Engines Essay

Comparison Of Search Engines

Category: Miscellaneous

Autor: F500 21 November 2009

Words: 1491 | Pages: 6

Comparison of Search Engines:
Altavista, Yahoo, and Excite
Internet Exploration Project: Search Engine Analysis
Introduction
The use of search engines on the Internet is a very significant aspect towards attaining information ranging from research purposes, like stock quotes, to daily use such as the weather in your hometown. The ability to find information on these engines all depend on experience, knowledge of certain search techniques, and remembering the strengths and advantages of each engine for particular information.
For my assignment, I have chosen to compare and contrast three popular search engines, Altavista, Yahoo, and Excite. Through the search of information on tourism in Taiwan, which I had little knowledge of before hand and to prepare me for my latter summer vacation, I recorded the engines’ advantages and disadvantages, their features, and the amount and quality of information they produced.
Review’s Intended Audience
The review of these three search engines is intended for any individuals who use the Internet for information purposes. The audience can range from beginners of the Internet to experienced individuals who use the Internet everyday such as for research projects. All users of search engines should be able to locate information they need easily through the education of advanced searching techniques. Hopefully this review can assist others on the advantages and disadvantages of these three search engines in their future information retrieval purposes.
Resource’s Intended Audience
The resources included in this review are intended for members of the community who are interested in the country of Taiwan and would like to learn more about this secluded territory. The information includes factual information such as political issues, social themes, and educational facts. The main focus of the review is toward the tourism aspect of Taiwan. There are many advertisements of travel agencies, hotels, and other tourist attractions. Individuals who are planning or interested in visiting Taiwan should take the time to review the information here to help them plan for their trip or to assist them to decide on a trip to Taiwan.
Investigation
For each search engine, I applied the same techniques and recorded their results. The techniques included:

Basic Terms and Phrase Advanced Boolean Searches
Tourism in Taiwan Taiwan+Tourism
Tourism "Taiwan+Tourism"
Travel Taiwan|Tourism
Taiwan Taiwan and Tourism
I also included the extra search features each search engine provided on their main pages, for
example a travel section or vacation section that would be relevant to my research purposes on
information for traveling in Taiwan. I then noted for each engines, any problems or difficulties I
encountered with them.
Search Engines
AltaVista www.altavista.com
In comparison with Yahoo and Excite, I believe the best search engine out of the three is Altavista. When phrases and terms were entered into the search engine more hits appeared in Altavista than the others did. In addition, when the searches became advanced there were still more hits in the Altavista engine. There seem to be an abundant amount of information in Altavista compared to the other two engines. The mass amount of hits may be disadvantageous resulting in more time spent to view, but it certainly is better than having too few hits and no information to work with. The information viewed in the hits contained significant data on Taiwan, ranging from about the economy, social and political facts, and the desired knowledge of tourism in the country. The hits contained advice on visiting Taiwan for foreigners and some hits were detailed to the point of giving information based on certain regions of Taiwan. Altavista also includes in its engine a section of extra answers to entered searches. This part included travel information such as hotel accommodations, transportation, ethnic cuisine, and tourist packages and also web pages of past visitors. Another section, the do’s and do not’s, gave advice on language, body manners, and social attitudes. On the main page of Altavista, there is a travel link where more hits can be achieved on tourism in Taiwan, which are different than the hits give before when an individual directly enters terms to search for. Overall, the Altavista search engine gave me a satisfied search with the information I needed for my trip.
Yahoo www.yahoo.com
The search engine, Yahoo, had a different set-up when presenting its search results. For example, Altavista presented its hits by web pages while Yahoo divides the searches into sites, category matches, and web pages. This technique by Yahoo separating the data is useful for individuals who know specifically what they are researching and the information they are looking for. The downfall of this search engine is the amount of insignificant information from the searches. When the searches of tourism in Taiwan were entered the hits included tourism about other countries and web pages that did not connect at all with the desired search. There was also the issue of the limited number of sites found with the advanced search compared to Altavista. Yahoo incorporates a section of related news to user's searches, for example with Taiwan; there was information on tourism in other Asian countries, but no additional information on Taiwan. There was also a travel agent link on the main page that lead to commercial sites and more travel information such as recommended restaurants and popular tourist sites.
Excite www.excite.com
Excite provides a wide array of information and more selections of gathering information with different techniques. Excite presents its results by topic sections and then the user must click on the topic to view more hits. In addition, the search engine lays the results with a summary section, a titles only section, or a web site section. Along with an advanced search query, there is also the option of using the techniques of web news related to the entered search, a selection of words to add to your search that they provide, discussions, references such as encyclopedias, and a related search section. The major problem with using Excite was the period of time it took for my advanced searches. On two separate occasions, I entered my advanced search terms and both times no reply was given even after 5 minutes of time. Another problem, was the automation of the computer downloading a casino web site that appeared with a web site hit. This problem was minor, but it was annoying and unneeded. This search engine would be the last of the three I would use personally.


Results
These results are from the techniques, mentioned previously, applied to each search engine, here is a summary of what each engine produced according to the search entered:



Search Terms, Boolean Phrases, Options Altavista Yahoo Excite
Tourism in Taiwan 1,835,690 hits of Web Pages. Hits were informative such as advice, facts about Taiwan. 2 sites-unimportant information,
6998 Web pages-mostly tourism information,
some pages the same as Altavista. 320,142 hits, information on general country of Taiwan, a map, tourism results such as accommodations, travel guides, etc.
Tourism 3,767,524 hits
Abundant information of any country, too vague. 13 category matches, 3530 site matches. About tourism in the whole world, guides bureaus. 141,185 hits. Similar to Tourism in Taiwan, but more factual information on Taiwan.
Travel 15,667,760 hits
Information about everything. Includes accommodations, travel agencies. 136 category matches. About kinds of travel, different countries, references.
Taiwan 1,285,950 hits
Information ranged from agricultural facts to tour information. 30 category matches, mostly about the business and economy of Taiwan, government situations.
Taiwan+Tourism 32 pages
Very useful, concise information
Probably the best search of all. 5 sites, engine said there was web page matches, but couldn't connect to them. Could not connect on two separate tries.
"Taiwan+Tourism" Same result as Taiwan+Tourism. 2 sites, but only about Canada offices in Taiwan. Could not connect.
Taiwan|Tourism 2,835,728 hits
Includes results from Taiwan and Tourism. A lot of insignificant information. Same information as "Taiwan+Tourism". Could not connect.
Taiwan and Tourism 15,762 hits
Results are commercials, hotels, eateries, and travel agencies. Same result as Taiwan+Tourism. Could not connect.
Extra Options Extra answers,
Do’s and Don’t Section,
Travel link on main page. Included an advanced search syntax guide, related news to entered search, and a travel agent link. Related web news, additional selected words, discussions, references, and other related searches.
Conclusion
This analysis project demonstrated the advantages and disadvantages of three specific search engines, Altavista, Yahoo, and Excite. The conclusion of this projects holds Altavista has the most highly recommended compared to the other two engines, based on data amount, presentation, search times, and the quality of the data found. The advanced searches provided by the engines helped a great deal such as the boolean searches. These searches narrowed the amount and quality of data provided leading to the information I desired. The only difficulties I had was with Yahoo and Excite. Excite gave me the most trouble for it did not connect to most of the searches, while Yahoo did the same with one or two of the searches. Overall, I did find the information I wanted and will use it on my coming trip later this summer.