Meta search engines do the one logical thing that relates well to the “not-reinventing-the-wheel” concept, i.e. presenting results culled from the best repositories in the world. And this article is about one such meta search engine that has gained lot of traction – SurfWax. Along with the main search there are options for blog search, RSS feeds search, ‘Wikipedia search, News and also shopping search
SurfWax search is available as a free and a subscription based service. The search site is bundled with a number of features other than plain search. The features include:
- A “focus” link to add “focus words” that you can add to the search. The focus words are narrower or broader terms that can be used to expand or narrow your search.
- On the right side of every result you can view the source of the web site.
- “SiteSnaps” feature ( a magnifying glass icon to the left of the result ) for obtaining a summary of the web page and also to know what terms the engine considered as relevant
- “ResultStats” feature to have the metrics on the source of all the results and the time it took to retrieve the results.
- Option to limit the number of results to show and also to sort the results.
Registered users get to add more options also :
- Search Sets : Create search sets customized to search from over 1,200 sources.
- Infocubbies : Store the snapshots from the various sources like Pdf, documents and web pages and use them to improve future searches. Also, the infocubbies can be shared and emailed effectively making it a collaborative bookmark system. Here’s a link to further details for registered users (SearchEngineWatch).
Free users get limited access to the search sets and infocubbies options.
Meta search engines are proliferating on the net. What is relevant here is not just the end result set for queries but the kind of options available that users customize the engines to act as their portals to the web. And SurfWax definitively includes exciting features to explore.