The 10 Best Search Engines of 2012

Search tools for the every person

As of May, 2012

Most people don’t want 290 search engines, especially people who are internet beginners. Most users want a single search engine that delivers three key features:

  1. Relevant results  (results you are actually interested in)
  2. Uncluttered, easy to read interface
  3. Helpful options to broaden or tighten a search

With this criteria, 10 Reader Favorite Search Engines come to mind. These 10 search sites should meet 99% of the searching needs of a regular everyday user.

Below is a changing list of user favorites, compiled from email suggestions. The sites below are in random order, and are updated regularly to reflect changes and user suggestions.
Submit a Site: you are welcome to suggest a search engine for inclusion in this list by a comment or mail us at blowfish412@gmail.com.

1. Ask (aka ‘Ask Jeeves’)

The Ask/AJ/Ask Jeeves search engine is a longtime name in the World Wide Web. The super-clean interface rivals the other major search engines, and the search options are as good as Google or Bing or DuckDuckGo. The results groupings are what really make Ask.com stand out. The presentation is arguably cleaner and easier to read than Google or Yahoo! or Bing, and the results groups seem to be more relevant. Decide for yourself if you agree… give Ask.com a whirl, and compare it to the other search engines you like.

Visit Ask here

2. Duck Duck Go

At first, DuckDuckGo.com looks like Google. But there are many subtleties that make this spartan search engine different. DuckDuckGo has some slick features, like ‘zero-click’ information (all your answers are found on the first results page). DuckDuckgo offers disambiguation prompts (helps to clarify what question you are really asking). And the ad spam is much less than Google. Give DuckDuckGo.com a try… you might really like this clean and simple search engine.

Visit DuckDuckGo here

3. Bing

Bing is Microsoft’s attempt at unseating Google. Bing used to be MSN search until it was updated in summer of 2009. Touted as a ‘decision engine’, Bing tries to support your researching by offering suggestions in the leftmost column, while also giving you various search options across the top of the screen. Things like ‘wiki’ suggestions, ‘visual search’, and ‘related searches’ might be very useful to you. Bing is not dethroning Google in the near future, no. But Bing is definitely worth trying.

Visit Bing here

4. The Internet Archive

The Internet Archive is a favorite destination for longtime Web lovers. The Archive has been taking snapshots of the entire World Wide Web for years now, allowing you and me to travel back in time to see what a web page looked like in 1999, or what the news was like around Hurricane Katrina in 2005. You won’t visit the Archive daily, like you would Google or Yahoo or Bing, but when you do have need to travel back in time, use this search site.

Visit the Internet Archive here

5. Yippy (formerly ‘Clusty’)

Yippy is a Deep Web engine that searches other search engines for you. Unlike the regular Web, which is indexed by robot spider programs, Deep Web pages are usually harder to locate by conventional search. That’s where Yippy becomes very useful. If you are searching for obscure hobby interest blogs, obscure government information, tough-to-find obscure news, academic research and otherwise-obscure content, then Yippy is your tool.

Visit Yippy/Clusty here

6. Yahoo!

Yahoo! is several things: it is a search engine, a news aggregator, a shopping center, an emailbox, a travel directory, a horoscope and games center, and more. This ‘web portal’ breadth of choice makes this a very helpful site for Internet beginners. Searching the Web should also be about discovery and exploration, and Yahoo! delivers that in wholesale quantities.

Visit Yahoo! here

7. Mahalo

Mahalo is the one ‘human-powered’ search site in this list, employing a committee of editors to manually sift and vet thousands of pieces of content.  This means that you’ll get fewer Mahalo hit results than you will get at Bing or Google. But it also means that most Mahalo results have a higher quality of content and relevance (as best as human editors can judge).

Mahalo also offers regular web searching in addition to asking questions.  Depending on which of the two search boxes you use at Mahalo, you will either get direct content topic hits or suggested answers to your question.

Try Mahalo.  You might like it enough to even become a editor there.

Visit Mahalo here

8. Dogpile

Years ago, Dogpile was the fast and efficient choice before Google.  Things changed, Dogpile faded into obscurity, and Google became king. But today, Dogpile is coming back, with a growing index and a clean and quick presentation that is testimony to its halcyon days.  If you want to try a search tool with pleasant presentation and helpful crosslink results, definitely try Dogpile.

Visit Dogpile here

9. Webopedia

Webopedia is one of the most useful websites on the World Wide Web. Webopedia is an encyclopedic resource dedicated to searching techno terminology and computer definitions. Teach yourself what ‘domain name system’ is, or teach yourself what ‘DDRAM’ means on your computer. Webopedia is absolutely a perfect resource for non-technical people to make more sense of the computers around them.

Visit Webopedia here

10. Google

Google is the undisputed king of ‘spartan searching’. While it doesn’t offer all the shopping center features of Yahoo!, Google is fast, relevant, and the largest single catalogue of Web pages available today. Make sure you try the Google ‘images’, ‘maps’ and ‘news’ features… they are outstanding services for locating photos, geographic directions, and news headlines.

Visit Google here


Blowfish12@2012 Author: Sudharsun. P. R.

Smartphone Shipments Overtake Client PCs In 2011 For The First Time Ever

A survey

The year 2011 marked a beginning of an important trend in mobile computing.

Smartphone shipments topped PCs for the first time ever last year, by 73 million units, according to figures published by research firm Canalys.

The total global shipments of smart phones for the whole of 2011 was 487.7 million units, up 63% on the 299.7 million smart phones shipped throughout 2010. By comparison, the global client PC market grew 15% in 2011 to 414.6 million units, with 274% growth in pad shipments. Pads accounted for 15% of all client PC shipments in 2011.

Smart Phones Overtake Client PCs In 2011

“In 2011 we saw a fall in demand for netbooks, and slowing demand for notebooks and desktops as a direct result of rising interest in pads,” said Chris Jones, Canalys VP and Principal Analyst. “But pads have had negligible impact on smart phone volumes and markets across the globe have seen persistent and substantial growth through 2011. Smart phone shipments overtaking those of client PCs should be seen as a significant milestone. In the space of a few years, smart phones have grown from being a niche product segment at the high-end of the mobile phone market to becoming a truly mass-market proposition. The greater availability of smart phones at lower price points has helped tremendously, but there has been a driving trend of increasing consumer appetite for Internet browsing, content consumption and engaging with apps and services on mobile devices.”

Apple’s impressive end to the year resulted in it becoming the leading smart phone and client PC vendor in Q4 2011, with shipments of 37.0 million iPhones, 15.4 million iPads and 5.2 million Macs. It also smashed the record for the most smart phones shipped globally by any single vendor in one quarter, beating Nokia’s previous record of 28.3 million shipped in Q4 2010.

World smartphone market 2011

Android was the leading smart phone platform by volume for the whole year 2011, accounting for 49% of all devices shipped in 2011 and ahead of iOS with 19% share and Symbian with 16%. Samsung’s success and focus on Android have contributed substantially to the growth of the platform, but other vendors, such as Sony Ericsson, Huawei, Motorola, LG and particularly HTC, have also seen significant growth in their Android volumes over the course of 2011.


Blowfish12@2012 Author: Sudharsun. P. R. Source: Canalys

Social Networking Set To Overtake Gaming On iOS And Android

 

Games have historically taken larger usage on mobile. The app revolution has changed the way software is distributed and used among consumers.  With a perfect storm of digital distribution, free content and powerful touch screen devices, the success of mobile apps has disrupted industries from telecommunications and games to music and news.

To date, no category of apps has been more successful than Games, directly disrupting the traditional gaming industry.

But, now a sign that something fundamental is changing on the iOS and Android platforms, mobile analytics provider Flurry has found that consumers are spending as much time in social networking apps as they are in mobile games.

The last time that Flurry took a look back in January, it found that half of app sessions were spent in games while 30 percent was spent in social networking apps.

“We take the rise in Social Networking apps as a signal of maturation for the platform,” wrote Flurry’s vice president of marketing Peter Farago. “As game demand may be hitting its saturation point, consumers are also discovering other apps, namely Social Networking.”

You can actually visually see the changes on the charts compared to a year ago. Today apps like Viddy, Socialcam and Instagram are in the Top 5 free in the U.S. on iOS. These are all apps for sharing content like videos and friends. A year ago, these would have probably been mostly games.

There are probably several forces at work in addition to the ones that Flurry describes. 1) The platforms are mature and other app categories are starting to develop. 2) Apple has cracked down on more unscrupulous forms of user acquisition, which benefited developers who had the cash to spend on marketing. Pre-revenue apps like Instagram can’t really justify spending tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars a month in marketing dollars. 3) Twitter and Facebook are starting to emerge as effective ways of distributing mobile apps. If you search Twitter for “Viddy” or OMGPOP’s “#drawsomething,” you’ll see that there are several tweets per minute about both apps.

Flurry also found that the time spent is affecting the revenue that apps in both categories earn. For the first time, advertising revenue for social networking apps in Flurry’s ad network AppCircle, surpassed that of ad revenue for games. The thing you have to consider, though, is that gaming apps are more dependent on in-app purchases of virtual currency. If you look on iOS’ top grossing charts, it’s still virtually all games in the Top 25.

The rise of Social Networking apps also signals the end of the era of gaming dominance within mobile apps.  While the free-to-play business model performs extremely well, enabled by in-app-purchases, it does so primarily for simulation games, a sub-genre of the total games category.  As long as the total iOS and Android installed base grows, all categories will continue to grow naturally.


Blowfish12@2012 Author: Sudharsun. P. R. Reference: [Flurry] blog.flurry.com

5 Reasons Where Android Wins Over iPhone

I have gone through Android phones as well as iPhone from where I came into conclusion that Android wins the battle against iPhone. I’ve described few points that might be little controversial. Nevertheless, I want to enlighten rather than unspoken to itemize. So now, let’s talk about various points that will illustrate the wining tale of Android over iPhone.

5-reasons where android wins over iPhone

  1. Application Options– In the Android platform, even if the application is still running programs, you can just press the “Menu” button to enter the application options, and the PC applications operate exactly the same. On the other hand, using the iPhone, you have to first pass the “Settings” option to enter the application. When the iPhone application within the application designer to add the “Options” button, occasionally you can skip this step, which in turn can direct to non-uniform, because not all applications have options.
  2. Devoid of iTunes– As we all knew without iTunes the iPhone can’t be synchronized with PC. This is the biggest fault of iPhone. Apple force you to install the software to fully manage your iPhone. Where in Android platform you can manage applications without any sync software. In fact, one of the Android device can be used by multiple applications on multiple platforms and management.
  3. Update– Update in iPhone is a flaw because to complete the update particularly in the firmware update , iPhone must hook up iTunes. Were as Android provides two update methods. One is OTA wireless download and other by installing the phone via PC using third-party software updates. Most of the software are very easy to use in Android. Here in Android OTA update is perfect. When informed of updates have been released, while the phone is still not displayed, it makes you disappointment. But usually talking, vendors release updated, your phone will display updated and ready to install.
  4. Application Installation– In Android you can download an app by coping the simple qr code or even install the app from Bluetooth. From Android Market you can download from wide-range of apps , more than 30,000 apps. All most all are official apps and are simple to use. Developers create apps for you but few people argue that these apps can open doors to malicious softwares in Android. You can operate it properly to avoid this mishap.
  5. Multitasking– Of course Android platform can actually carry out multiple tasks. Yes, Apple avers iPhone can do, but according to users the iPhone platform can be challenged for the actual operation. In Android phones you need to do is press the “Home” button, the list will show the running application. In the list, you can liberally switch between applications and you can even install third-party Android application such as Power Strip for the execution of extra powerful multi-tasking.

There were a lot of grounds I think Android is superior than iphone, but these five are the most significant. Without a doubt, iPhones in many ways are fairly good, but for those with more liberty to have the benefit of the gear to bring a sense of real people and Android is indubitably a good pick.