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The Internet Needs a Search Engine Driven Off RSS Feeds

Dave Aiello wrote, "A number of bloggers have pointed to the article Unearthing Dirt in Weblogs Still a Black Art by Mark Glaser. Glaser rightly points out that sites like Google News exclude almost every weblog from their search results, instead focusing on sites operated by the mainstream media. He goes on to say that Blogdex and Daypop have more references to mainstream media web sites than to weblogs."

"I could argue that Blogdex's, and to a lesser extent Daypop's, primary function is to glean what weblogs are talking about, not specifically what they say. Nevertheless, I think that many weblogs contain valuable information, useful analysis, and commentary in their own rights. This information is hard to get at unless you use a broad search engine like Google or AllTheWeb. But then weblog results are co-mingled with information coming from all sorts of sites that have nothing to do with the genre."

"One of the things that I had hoped was that Google would launch an RSS search engine after it acquired Pyra Labs, the company that developed Blogger. Many webloggers, such as Dave Winer, have given up on this. But, I see no reason why a pure RSS-based search engine would not be a valuable addition to the Internet. There is no question that it is technically possible."

"Such a search engine would make it possible for news hounds to go straight to the source of grassroots buzz that often results in stories published in The New York Times or The Washington Post, or on Slashdot, two or three days later. It would also segregate the results of weblogs from more 'edited' sources of news-- that still clearly matters to some people."

"I think the blogosphere has reached a point where people would like to be able to search for information that has specifically been published on weblogs. I think the metadata already exists for a blog-specific search engine (in the form of RSS), the infrastructure is fairly obvious (see Weblogs.com),and the auto-discovery mechanism makes it easy for a search engine to work without requiring blogs to register themselves."

"The big question in my mind is who will develop a pure RSS-based search engine with the same sort of simplicity for which Google is already famous?"

Update by Dave Aiello: I understated Doc Searls' contribution to the ideas expressed in this essay by omitting a link to his article called Making a Different Extinction, published earlier today. In the interest of reducing the overall length of this article, I removed the only appropriate opportunity to link to Doc's article. I only realized there was no reference to his article upon rereading mine.

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