Monday, June 1, 2009

Bing - Microsoft's New Search site

Microsoft has launched a new search site, Bing. This site is different than Windows Live, Google, and Yahoo, in how it presents search results.

When searching the internet, the results are displayed not based on relevance to the search term like the others, but based on how popular a site it is. Some early reviews and comments show a split among people, with some liking it and some hating it. Like anything else, it is personal preference.

The layout is similar to other search results, but you can click on an icon to the right of the result and see the first parts of that site.

In image search, you only get the images themselves in the results. However, hovering over an image brings up more details, like the source web page. This allows for a clean appearance, but I like Google's way of showing the source site because I use that as a guide for evaluating the image.

Video search will play a thumbnail view of the video in the search page when you hover your mouse over the thumbnail. There is a problem here though. If a user changes the filtering settings for Bing they can see ANY video in the thumbnail, even if there is a filter on the system that they are using. This means that a student could search for videos and watch them in thumbnail version, even if the source site is blocked by the school's filter system, so teachers beware.

Overall, Bing is a nice, different way of searching the internet. I suggest that people should try it out with the same search that they do on their normal search engine and see which they personally prefer, or which one gives them the best search results for them.


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