Blabberings on technology, the web, mobile world, India, books, events, communities and everything else (Chautauqua: An old-time series of popular talks intended to edify and entertain, improve the mind and bring culture and enlightenment to the ears and thoughts of the participants)

Location: United States

Monday, August 08, 2005

tag search - does it really work?

Now, I do not intend to bash Technorati (they being the most well known in the tag-search domain) and I honestly do believe that the idea does indeed have great potential. Being a recent convert, I decided to check how their 'tag search' works. I made two assumptions for my test, both of which I believe are quite reasonable.

1) Most of technorati's admirers are tech-savvy people
2) Most of these tech-savvy people would know about mobile blogging

So, I decided to search for posts tagged 'mobile blogging'. The search results rolled out to 68 posts tagged in the last 102 days. I looked at the first 10 - lo and behold - not one of them had to do with mobile blogging! (I've included a screen shot of the first few results above) A lot of them had been categorized by the authors under mobile blogging, because they were written while mobile and at least one of them (the first one incidentally), had nothing to do with mobile blogging at all!

So, was I looking for blog posts that came from mobile devices? Or was I looking for posts about mobile blogging? Semantically, we should be able to pick up the latter and that's what I was looking for. Someday, when tags become an integral part of web publishing and people associate real semantics with them, tag searches will be incredibly relevant. However, until then, I guess we will still have to fish for relevant information.


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