How about a find engine?

Adam Fields and Barry Welford have convinced me to try making a habit of searching with Clusty. No time to put together a research-driven case, but so far I find myself liking the results.

That said, I’ve felt from the beginning that search has always been something of a kluge required by the absence of a real directory for the Web — one to which anybody can add anything in a durably findable way. That’s why I’ve been intrigued by the possibilities of XRI/XDI since I first heard about it.

Someday somebody is going to base a deeply cool and useful product or service on XRI/XDI standards — an invention that mothers necessity for the standard. Just watch.


  1. Tom Morris’s avatar

    XRI? Yuck. We already have a standard for distinguishing resources called URI. And it seems to work just fine.

  2. Doc Searls’s avatar

    For those who care to follow, here are Wikipedia links for URI, XDI andXRI.

  3. docduke’s avatar

    My experience is the reverse. I can consistently find things on the Web using search engines, more easily than I can find text fragments on my hard drives. There are indexing tools for the hard drive contents such as Beagle, but (1) they are resource hogs, and (2) they are intolerant of nonstandard file structures.

    Search is a well-defined, almost mathamatically precise, easily parallelizable process. A directory structure is usually an extension of someone’s intuitive concept of categories and subcategories. A directory structure that seems completely natural to one person may seem very illogical to another. I first recognized the problem when I picked up a “Yellow Pages” in Belgium. Its organizational structure bore no resemblance to the U.S. equivalent.

  4. Barry Welford’s avatar

    Thanks for the mention, Doc. I only wish Clusty was more easily accessible, e.g. via the Firefox Search function. Way back I always used to find Vivisimo, the parent of Clusty, was one of the better meta-search engines and I’m finding that its off-spring is performing well for me.

  5. Adam Fields’s avatar

    So… I get no credit for pointing out that Clusty’s results often match or exceed Google’s (and Yahoo’s)? 🙁

  6. Doc Searls’s avatar

    Sorry Adam, my bad. Just fixed it. See above. 🙂

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