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Slashback: Price-fixing, Borneo, Index 122

Greetings from the Wings Academy of the Bronx, from which this trio of Slashback entries springs. (I'm sitting with Miguel Muirhead, Jay Sulzberger and Ariel Rosa as we semi-surreptitiously install Red Hat and Debian distributions on two of this school's computer-lab desktops.) I hope you enjoy these updates.

I went down to the sacred store ... While the music industry (odd phrase, no?) certainly has more things to worry about, like not selling shiny disks full of overproduced pap, but dcigary writes to remind us: "The music industry was trying to control prices via their 'MAP' pricing scheme, but the FTC has started to put a stop to that. Discount retailers are responding by lowering prices dramatically -- sometimes cheaper-than-wholesale."

This doesn't find my lovely friend Uyen, though. Admin writes: "Howdy. Nearly 2 years ago, after a year of building the thing, I announced www.theindex.com search engine on Slashdot, which promptly gave it the drubbing it deserved. The reponse crashed TheIndex into the dirt. 2 years and lots of money and hard work later, TheIndex is now finished, and kicks butt. This started when I was whining to my software-engineer son about either having to wade thru "237,542 search results found", 10 at a time, or thru sub, sub sub, ad nauseum, categories. TheIndex has NO categories, (it uses a synonym-search process instead) and gives results 100 links at a time. It has nearly all of the best of the Internet (no one has it all) and the rest will come. There are NO porn or personal websites. Nearly all of the crap has been weeded out. This is a search engine built by only two people that is just as good, or better, than most of the top engines. We would really appreciate another chance on Slashdot, to show what TheIndex can do."

It sure looks promising, but failed to find a few friends whose names I tapped in, and surely that's a frequent search engine task. Anyhow, time to give these guys some constructive criticism again, eh? The more search engines the better as far as I'm concerned!

Cultural differences aren't just for yogurt Reader Leong Chii Kee objected to many of the comments in the story about bringing Internet-linked computers by boat to remote parts of Malaysia, and wrote with some clarifications:

After checking out your post
Bringing The Internet To Borneo -- By Sea, which started an entire line of misinformation about my country, I figured I'd write to the source and hope that you would put up a additional description of the situation.

Firstly, There is essentially two parts of Malaysia, West Malaysia, which most of you would know is where our capital is, Kuala Lumpur (don't ask me why it translates to "mud cove" - I didn't name it) and there is East Malaysia. West Malaysia is fairly developed, we have our own silicon valley equivalent, and last I checked even those "kampung" (as our tourism board happily promotes it!) houses in the middle of the jungle had a phone line and electricity (and with a cheap copy of linux who said the poor can't afford internet access). But the situation is vastly different in East malaysia, which remains rather under-developed (you know jungles, rain forests, orang utans and stuff).

Secondly, the article deals with how the central government (located in west malaysia - lucky fellas) is trying to introduce the internet to eastern malaysians and NOT the attempts to bring Maylasian citizens into the Internet Age.. So it's nothing more than bringing internet to part of a country that doesn't have it (because it ain't that easy laying fiber optic cables in the rain forest when you have some eco-protection agency breathing down your neck about protecting the forest)... Imagine if you're sitting comfortably in front of your all powerful Athlon server with broadband access and halfway across globe someone calls you a spear wielding, hide wearing native. You'll be pissed too.

Thanks in advance,

CK

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Music Retailers - More Whining about cheap CD's

Comments Filter:
  • I tried the Perl thing too. Ha-ha. Results were similarly useless for a couple other topics of interest to me.

    In fact, can anyone find a single search for which this search engine returns useful results?

    Are these people serious?? Or was I just unlucky?

    ---Bruce Fields

  • True. But, I'm drunk, and I'm lazy. That's why I didn't say for certain whether it uses IP address or cookies. It's easier for me to ssh to another box on another network and fire up lynx than it is to point and drool round Netscape menus.

    In addition, further poking of their 'search engine' seems to indicate that it's cock-up, not conspiracy to blame. And I am talking about the sort of fuckup that, if one of my staff did it, they would receive the highly-coveted 'moron of the day' bog-brush award.
  • I assumed they just meant they didn't reference Geocities or Angelfire.
  • "What can you do?" he sighed. "You carry catalog the other guys don't; you offer better service. You do whatever it takes."

    "Whatever it takes," indeed. I'm shocked that someone would actually consider offering better service than the minimum-wage monkey at Best Buy -- and how dare real music stores carry the CDs I, as an admitted music-snob, would be interested in?

    I don't shop at Best Buy anymore, and I never bought CDs there; but if $5 CDs at Best Buy mean better service & better selection at the indie music stores I go to, I'm all for it.

    Besides, I'll shop at a store with the asshole from "High Fidelity" who knows his music over the Qwik-E-CD with $5 BoyBand-Of-The-Month deals any day.

    I don't mean to sound unconcerned about indie shops going out of business; that definitely does suck. But if Best Buy steals all the generic-pop-music fans from "my" music shop, more power to 'em.

  • checked site. tried searching for "dragonball"

    21 results

    non-noise or interesting results:

    5 generic anime sites
    1 personal site half devoted to dbz
    1 personal site that happed to have its own tld
    1 hentai site

    hmm.. maybe this could be useful.. someone (not me,i cant code, i am ashamed) could write a script to do your search on google and theindex, then return the google results minus the theindex results. the S/N ratio would improve dramatically!

    Oh, and note that that search returned both personal pages and pr0n. good job.
  • by Eloquence ( 144160 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @04:08PM (#574274)
    "Web searching made simple.[TM] Exclusively for locating commercial, professional, technical and academic information, products and services."

    Perhaps a better slogan would be "Turning your web into a TV set." By filtering what this guy calls crap, he is excluding some of the best information repositories from his index. It is the non-commercial, private sites that are interesting for end-users (and often hard-to-find). If I want to buy stuff, there's already lots of portals for me to choose from.

    As I'm testing this thing for missing sites, I have a hard time finding one that is listed. Slashdot, RIAA, no relevant hits. Microsoft, the first relevant hit somewhere at the bottom: "http://www.microsoft.com/office/outlook". The result list doesn't have ratings, doesn't show URLs in output either. So what is it exactly that took you two years? Ah, "filtering the crap", and adding the descriptions, I suppose. Thanks, but no thanks. If this wasn't December, I'd think this is an April Fool's joke.

    I think we have a potential fucked company [fuckedcompany.com] here.

    --

  • Um, I think you used the "refine this search" link. It was trying to refine your red search with blue ones.
  • I suspect you missed the fact that the search box at the top of the results page begins with "Refine this search:". So, you're getting fewer and fewer hits because you're asking for a smaller and smaller subset. You need to return to the front page to do a new search.

    A search for porn from the front page returned 95 hits.

    The state isn't stored in a cookie or anything, it's right in the URL, take a look.

  • First, the *primary* search method this engine uses is by the keywords specified by the *person submitting the site*. If they don't supply a word you are looking for, it won't come up.

    Now, how many non-lesbians and gays (OK and the above-average intelligent literary types =p) know who sappho was? Of those, how many have webpages? Of those, how many keyed that word in when they registered their page?

    Second, yes, sometimes it does still show the wrong search. If you look carefully at the URL, however, you'll notice that if you search for "red", you'll get: search?words=red. Now, do another search from here for blue and you get: search.pl?words=red&subs=blue Looks like it's getting into secondary proceedures/refining/whatever -- I looked but couldn't find very good documentation on this.

    theindex.com obviously has a long way to go. Yes, it would be nice for them to open the source. Yes, they need to start a database of relevancy or something, say, have a two links next to each result, such as "this was helpful" or "this was useless" and let the userbase refine which search options come up first.

    Reguardless, it's a good start. I generally try not to critisize something (especially code) unless I know for a fact I could do it better. Somehow, based solely on your comment, I don't think you could *grin*

    DranoK



    Shh! Nobody knows I'm gay!
  • Have you considered Pricewatch.com? It's takes into context price conscious consumers while providing you with a crap load of stuff.
  • by pjrc ( 134994 ) <paul@pjrc.com> on Thursday December 07, 2000 @04:12PM (#574279) Homepage Journal
    I agree, there's a lot of personal pages that have a lot of really valuable info (will list some below). My personal pages have been on the net since Sept '95, originally hosted at OSU [orst.edu], but for the last couple years with my own domain name [pjrc.com]. I've put a lot of work into them, and at least for their specialized topics, I think they're at least reasonable, perhaps better than a good portion of the more mainstream commercial sites I've seen.

    Having worked so much on my personal pages, and having seen others that are really great, it's a bit distubing to hear an attitude like "all of the best of the Internet ... NO porn or personal websites".

    There certainly are a lot of cases of personal sites that are arguably better than a good portion of their commercial counterparts. Phil's Photo.net [photo.net] comes easily to mind. Jakob Nielsen's Useit.com [useit.com] is probably another well known example. How about mp3projects.com [mp3projects.com], which is hosted on freeservers.com [freeservers.com].

    So I'm wondering what is it, exactly, that makes a personal website, well, a personal site that they're above indexing?

    • Contact info for the author, instead of a generic webmaster@ ??
    • Having the tilde ("~") in the URL?
    • Authored by a real person who cared instead of a by-the-hour web consulting firm?
    • Not selling any products?
    • Not being a company or institution (w/ a logo)?
    • A main page lacking over-done graphical design and/or flash-based intro?
    • Black-n-Yellow "Under Construction" signs?
    Of course, what I'm really wondering is if my little site [pjrc.com] will be countable? I just tried their submit url [theindex.com] page, so maybe I'll find out if I count for anything. I submitted the url for my 8051 microcontroller page [pjrc.com], so maybe that'll not-personal enough for them?

    Still, the attitude expressed about personal websites is a bit disturbing. You'd think folks building an index of the net would know a bit more about some the truely great personal sites.

  • sure my hobby and choice of music may be a little obscure, but it's the semi-obscure things that i want the internet for.

    Right on! That's what so many people failed to realize before all the .coms starting dying. At the peak of the frenzy I was heard to say on more than one occasion that "I miss the internet the way it used to be--obscure, intellectual, and hostile".

  • it doesn't list me near the top of a search for my own stuff!

    TheIndex.com does not list pornographic or personal websites. According to the Submit URL [theindex.com] page:

    "TheIndex does not accept personal, pornographic, hacking, or "warez" website links. This includes personal sites about rock or movie stars, Star Wars, your trip to Swaziland or whatever. We are for business and professional website links only and all sites are reviewed thoroughly prior to acceptance."
    TheIndex seems to be a directory with a good search feature rather than a true search engine. It leaves out all the personal home pages that have the real scoop on countless subjects the big boys that sell banners just won't touch.

    This is why I'm sticking with Google [google.com].

  • by interiot ( 50685 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @05:10PM (#574282) Homepage
    Search for comic: 1685 [207.202.129.66] sites.

    If you use the box on the search results page, you're refining the search, not searching again like all the other search engines do. Many people (including me at first) seem to be stumbling over this. It'd be nice if they had one box with radio buttons that defaults to "new search" or something like that.

    Anyhow, I don't see how a search engine that doesn't spider can be very good.
    --

  • Nice concept and all, but I did a search for "theindex" on theindex.com [207.202.129.66] and here's what I got:

    Could not find any matches for your search terms.
    Try broadening your search to category names or using more general terms.
    New sites matching your search will be located and indexed as time and availability permit.
    Thank you for using TheIndex.

    Would you like to pet my Penguin? The Linux Pimp [thelinuxpimp.com]

  • I spent (er, LOST) about 30 minutes of time before I found a place that would sell me one online.

    Thats funny, I went to pricewatch.com, searched for "k6-2 500" and came up with ~180 results. Most of them were CPU only (starting at 43USD), but some were complete systems.
    I dont think its the search engines that are the problem. I think it's the user in this case.

    Mark Duell
  • They did say no porn and no personal pages...
  • The only similarity is that Best Buy appears to be taking a loss on certain CDs, perhaps with the intention of undercutting and ruining their competition. Microsoft's use of this technique (giving IE away for free), was a relatively unimportant action.

    The DOJ and a federal judge thought otherwise.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    I'm Dennis Branch, admin for TheIndex. I'm gonna have to get registered here. TheIndex DOES have personal sites, the one above sounds like it will become another one. The problem here is that 99 and 44/100ths percent pure of all personal sites are also pure crap. 12 year old script kiddies and so on. I can state this as a fact after wading through over 100,000 of them. It took damn near forever, so we decided to stop putting so much labor into them and screen them ALL out. We WANT good stuff. Any of you have a good techie website, Please Do submit it, to: http://www.theindex.com/theindex/submit.htm. Thanks!
  • Searched on "php" (since I'm currently playing with it).

    Neither php.net nor zend.com were found in the first 100 results.

    Google returns php.net as #1, and a sub-page of zend.com somewhere before #50.

    Unfortunately, that's a problem -- a search on topic "x" should return the official "x.net" site near the top and getting the related developer "we-made-x.com" site is also good.

    I fear it's going to be a tough row to hoe. As for me--I'm content with Google, and would need a very compelling reason to switch. But hopefully TheIndex will eventually provide that level of performance.

    Still, a new search engine from scratch by just one man is quite impressive (to me, anyway).
    -----
    D. Fischer
  • I'm thinking that 2 people have no hope of managing the task at hand. I give em credit for trying though.

  • It's only recently I've come to a decent appreciation of the distinction between the first and second world. If you're not a rich country, it doesn't mean you're poor either. This was brought home to me by a holiday in Thailand and Malaysia. In Thailand Internet cafe's are everywhere; and (peninsular) Malaysian cities have lots of nice new cars on the road. There are still parts of the country that are v. poor, and they can't afford a welfare state yet, even one as proportionally small as the US.

    But they're not "savages in the jungle" ... IANAE*, but I reckon if they keep their eye on the ball, Malaysia could be a rich country in the next 10-20 years ...

    * I Am Not An Economist

  • My hell sakes in a handbasket!! There were TEN porn sites, not one. We've been all through those links before, and how those got in I'll never know, but thanks for pointing that out! They've been deleted on the admin server and will be gone from search results sometime tonight. THANKS!
  • There are twelve (count them, 12) "Drexel University" sites for a search for Drexel University. I don't know what you did wrong, but you did something.
  • There are 284 mysql sites on TheIndex. I think all the "zero" search results may be caused by ping timeout. We'll fix it.
  • "Exclusively for locating commercial, professional, technical and academic information, products and services." Well, ok, that's nice in practice, but how exactly are you goint to differentiate the millions of pages of the web. What's to say someone's personal site with some technical information, information that's more useful than something provided by Sony.com [sony.com] will get indexed.

    I looked for several different things following that search engine and did not find a single item I was looking for. It seems that instead of limiting the searching area for us, it should simply index everything (like our favorite search engine [google.com]) and then allow us to whittle down the information by whatever means we find neccessary. Allow us to use '-'s to get rid of information you don't want, don't do it for us.

    That is all.
  • Well, ok, we censor sex links, scriptkiddie junk, "All about my dog Bunky" and so forth, yeah. Do you really want to see that stuff? Great. you can find it most anywhere. But that ministry site merely happened to come up first. Personally, I think we have too many ministry sites, but we don't censor religions. We even have Satanism.
  • Actually, there are a bunch of links for both php and zend. A search for php, then refining by typing in "php" again in the Refine box, gave 80 sites. Zend gives 10 sites. I think you may have typed in the URL (php.net), in which case you're unlikely to get results. We don't use URLs as keywords. The Refine Search" box, by the way, searches the site DESCRIPTIONS. Also, it was two of us who built this thing, not one, but the compliment is appreciated.
  • Dennis Branch, admin for TheIndex. No, your name isn't there. Neither is anarchocapitalism. Everything else is though, so I don't know why those searches should have failed. We'll look into it. Possibly it's related to ping time. ???
    Nope. I've figured it out, it was a user interface issue. I had a search results window up and was typing most of these queries into the "Refine this search:" box at the top. I'd type "pig", get no results, hit the back button on my browser in order to get a search box, type a different query and so on. Based on the way other search engines work, I expected that putting text in that search window would by default do a new search on whatever text I typed in that window. But -- I can tell by looking at the URL -- it's doing a sub-search instead, including whatever term I initially searched for.

    You might want to change that UI. "Refine this search" doesn't imply to me what you want it to imply. You could make this a new search instead but put the previous search terms in the input area so the user can refine by adding more terms on the end. Or you could have a radio button that toggles whether the new search is a subsearch.

  • i agree. it doesnt even reflect itself. try http://207.202.129.66/cgi-bin/search?words=theinde x ..it returns no hits. thats stupid.
  • I have plenty of sites which are not pornographic or personal. Anyway, I was just joking, silly!
  • Ok, so i tried some searches.

    Searching for linux quake [207.202.129.66] returned 12 hits, but not linuxquake.com.

    Searching for mpaa decss [207.202.129.66] returned nothing.

    Searching for sony aibo [207.202.129.66] also returned nothing.

    I like what these people are trying to do; I just think the implementation isn't that great yet.
  • by rho ( 6063 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @04:14PM (#574301) Homepage Journal

    I did a search for "dog food" [207.202.129.66] and it came up with Great Subs and More! [greatsubsandmore.com]. This is the funniest thing I've seen!

    I tried "danni ashe" as well [207.202.129.66], and it came up with Boob-Ville! [boob-ville.com] (regrettably, nothing behind that URL). Heh, "No Porn" indeed!

    (Suddenly, I'm struck with a thought... what if this search engine isn't supposed to be funny? What if this is deadly serious?)

  • by TheKodiak ( 79167 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:34PM (#574302) Homepage
    Can someone please tell me what they HAVE succeeded in finding with TheIndex? I must search for the wrong things.

    Failed searches:
    flail (no appropriate results in first 50)
    user friendly (no results)
    sluggy (no results)
    comic (3 useless results)
    guernica (no results)
    pieta (no results)
    hieronymous bosch (no results)
    germany (1 useless result)
    white house (no results)
    operation overlord (no results)
    fantasy combat (no results)
    backstreet boys (no results)

    I did find some good results for "poultry" buried in there... Which seems to be in keeping with their philosophy of "most of what we return will be garbage, you need to look for the pearls". I just wish they'd give me more garbage.

    Also, it would be nice to be able to initiate a new search from the "Suck it down, bitch" page.
  • Search for "soviet computer" (hoping to find anything on the history of computer science in xUSSR) and what do you get? Namely (I just love the number 1; does theindex.com have a hidden agenda, anyone?):

    1 : Russian Immigration Services and Adoption Agency for Russian Orphans

    Russian Immigration Services offers many free services to immigrants from the former Soviet Union. RIS supports Russian orphanages and is a licensed adoption agency for Russian orphans.

    2 : East-West Technology Partners Ltd. technology search and transfer service specializing in technologies from Russia and the former Soviet Union.

    3 : Kent International page frame-placeholder for index.htm

    Providing management experience and the financial support to unlock the value of target company assets.

    4 : High School 116 (Odessa, former USSR / Ukraine) Home Page

    www.116.org

    5 : Intel Russia

    Online technical support for the Soviet Union.

    6 : FarPost - ??????&

    FarPost - VIRTUAL RUSSIAN FAR EAST.

    The rest are as ludicrous, esp. 4 and 5.

    E-e-excuse me?!

  • by Anonymous Coward
    ...and the capital is the home of the tallest (currently) buildings in the world, the Petronas Towers.

    I wouldn't really call them under developed. :)

  • well i thought i'd try out this "theindex.com" thing with a quick little search of what interests me. i'm a dj and i spin two types of music: UK Hard House and Nu-NRG. i search the web for all sorts of things related to this hobby, and there are lots of pages out there on the subject.

    theindex gives me:

    Nu-NRG: nothing.

    UK Hard House: one site. one site [laughoutload.com], completely unrelated.

    sure my hobby and choice of music may be a little obscure, but it's the semi-obscure things that i want the internet for. i'll stick with google methinks.

    (i should note however that my search for "stropharia cubensis" did turn up one link, and it was related, but one link is hardly enough on this subject).

    - j

  • Stop Post- You're not evil. You're incompetent. I just did a search for 'Lesbian' and it returned '9 sites found for sappho'. You are maintaning state information. But only because your back-end software sucks harder than raw vacuum. All I have to say is 'open the fucking code. You need the help badly'.

    Make sure you go back to the main page to do a new search, otherwise you will just be refining your old search results. I.e., search for sappho:

    10 sites found for 'sappho'

    then enter lesbian in the box "refine this search"

    9 sites found for 'sappho'

    Perhaps this is what you did?
  • I couldn't find any links about cars that drive themselves (computer driven cars) there. But then I can't find anything about them on other search engines either. You'd think something that nifty would be on the web somewhere, hrm? ;)

    Type computer driven cars into google [google.com] and you get lots of relevant hits.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    Seriously, are there any search engines that specialize in porn? Surely that could be a very profitable business?

    Just, um, curious.

  • Search for "linux ip masq". You get NOTHING. Search for "google". You get NOTHING. If you search for "theindex", you get NOTHING. Theindex isn't even self aware... WTF?? If you search for "theindex" on google you get paydirt on the second hit. If you search for "google" on google you get google as the first hit. Makes sense to me. I'm sticking with google...nuff said. -Ironworks
  • I did a few searches and the engine seemed to practically return random links. I searched for google (didn't return google at all), sex (alright, so it's a "Family Oriented Search Engine) which had the #1 result of the James Group Ministry - which is an amazing 1 page website that has 1 link - back to it's self, and CNN, which although it did return CNN's website, it didn't return the front page (come on, this is a pretty simple bonus to raise the front page of a site up to the top!)

    I did find one search result which seems to return more relevant results than google: "fax repair new york". Is this the type of search this site's designed for? (Google get's too many fax phone numbers in there for this to be useful).
  • Hmm.... search for "slashdot" yeilded 17 results.. not a single one of them leading to anything on Slashdot's servers. Glad author was nice enough to submit the story here to get hits.

  • OK, let's look at some of the things (some already pointed out by the AC) that are required for an information economy:

    • electricity--stable and plentiful
    • sanitiation
    • literacy
    • telecomm infrastructure (ie stable phone lines)
    • Reasonable physical health...I mean, a brand new Athlon doesn't do a whole lot of good if you can't use it because you're stuck in bed, shivering with a fever
    • Social acceptance of the technology

    I got a lot of those from William Wresch's Disconnected. It didn't get great reviews here on Slashdot, but I think it's a worthwhile read if you honestly think that going from impoverished 3rd world nation to IT industry is that easy.

  • shop at goto. [goto.com]

    I looked for "AMD K6-2 500"

    my first try... after about 20 seconds... [goto.com]

    when you want to buy something, don't waste your time looking on yahoo/google, or altavista, or theindex.com (god forbid). I don't understand why anyone would really spend time trying to help the poor suckers who somehow decided that the world needs YET ANOTHER search engine/portal. This isn't about barriers to entry, it's about functionality- why should users humor a new entry into a space where there's already a clear winner?

  • Dont forget the chemical spewing plastics factory to produce PokemonPlasticPrizes for Happy Meals.

    This comment wouldn't be coming from the country that consumes those Happy Meals? That recently killed an agreement to control global warming? That consumes more per capita than any other country in the world...?

  • It doesn't cover "personal pages", which makes it a pile of crap. A huge chunk of the genuinely interesting stuff on the net is off the beaten track - not to mention the fact that a large number of such unimportant unknowns as Kernighan have their main presence on their home page.

  • Hrm, someone needs to fix that link to http://slashdot.org/www.theindex.com in the third paragraph...


    __
  • I'll go along with this. I've been doing a lot of work with qmail recently and usually when the documentation or the links from the qmail site have failed me a quick search in Google has bailed me out of the shit. A lot of the useful scripts, examples and so on I've found have been on personal homepages. I've just tried similar searches on theindex and they've failed to bring up any links to useful information.
    --
  • Getting searching right isn't just something minor, y'know. It's incredibly important.

    Indeed. My gf is a librarian + spends a considerable chunk of her time training people to use search engines effectively. (She works in an academic library) Often the information is out there, but getting to it can require a lot of skill and background knowledge that most people don't necessarily have. Phil
    --
  • It seems to me that Malaysia has more legitamate concerns than whether it is online. Surley the most ignorant Malaysian buerocrat realises this?

    So why are they taking this action? I would argue that they are being pressurised by the Western Capitalist Countries, especially Singapore and the USA.

    It is well known that Singapore would like to be at the centre of a far Eastern e-commerce hub, and so is trying to 'develop' Malaysia, Borneo, Laos and other neighbouring countries.

    The dictatorship of Singapore is backed by the USA, of course, and so yet again Human Rights abuses are occuring in the name of capitalism. I would like to see Malaysia left alone to focus its resources as it sees fit, on the poor and needy. Just because it has socialist leanings, this does not mean it is an enemy of the USA & Singapore.

    This may seem controversial, I suppose, but I really felt it had to be said.

    KTB:Lover, Poet, Artiste, Aesthete, Programmer.

  • Can someone tell me the definition of Borneo? Thanks.
  • Especially if it was a family search engine for porn. I'd use that. This site, theindex.com, is nearly useless. I've got absolutely no use for a search engine like this, although there might be some who would. What I wonder is why the fsck this guy would want slashdot opinions when it's obvious that /.ers would loathe a search engine that is so business oriented, not to mention butt fucking ugly.
  • You have to wonder wether or not the discounting of cd's while nice in the short term will actually benefit or harm the variety of music available.
  • Don't forget to mention their bullshit "synonym syntax(tm)" technology. This site shouldn't even qualify for mention on slashdot.
  • Heh, I tried this link and was redirected to intersluts.com [intersluts.com]. Cool.
  • look in an atlas
  • "spear wielding, hide wearing native"

    As if that were a bad thing...
  • What do they have to trade -- except those planet-wide essentials?
  • I don't like this search engine, because it doesn't list me near the top of a search for my own stuff!
  • by Phexro ( 9814 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:15PM (#574329)
    um, quite a lot of the really good resources on the net are at people's personal homepages.

    for example, this site [uswest.net], which provides all sorts of info to USQwest DSL users.

    is it really a good idea to silence the voice of the masses like this?
    --
  • Dennis Branch (of theindex.com) writes:
    TheIndex DOES have personal sites, the one above sounds like it will become another one. The problem here is that 99 and 44/100ths percent pure of all personal sites are also pure crap. 12 year old script kiddies and so on. I can state this as a fact after wading through over 100,000 of them.

    <flame mode on> (I hope I don't lose too much karma over this....)

    I'm guessing that 99.44% crap isn't actually based on having viewed 100k pages (keeping a tally as you go). Even if the crap is 99.44%, some of the very best and most informative pages on the web are in the 0.66% (I believe it's more) personal pages that are well made. Most commercial pages usually don't give you a whole lot of info about a particular topic, and it's quite rare to see a good discussion of how to really compare solutions to a problem, as vendors will try to only sell you their own solution (even if it's inferior), and commercial publishers have a long history or favoring their advertisers, and often care a lot more about page-views than really helping anyone.

    So Dennis, even if you have viewed 99440 crap pages (166 hours at 6 seconds each), my point is that you have a very bad attitude towards personal pages, where a small portion are some of the best and most informative pages on the web!. One or two good personal pages relating a real person's actual experiences and tips solving a particular problem is a lot more valuable than hundreds of commercial pages that only try to hawk their wares without really helping you understand and learn anything. I believe it's even a lot more valuable than a dozen zdnet-style product reviews.

    Even if you do index the good personal pages (despite your attitude), the sad truth is that the bar has been raised for search engines. What you have today may have been pretty good a couple years ago when you started. Google has really raised peoples expectations, and it's looking like the others are catching up to google's excellent performance. You still have a lot of work to do. I'd suggest you start by rethinking how you judge the value of web pages.

  • My initial response to TheIndex, dont quit your day job fellas.

    After 3 sample searches, while one of my nick that returns many results on most other "top search engines" returns none on TheIndex.

    Searching for another search engine (google) returns 89 results, while the top hit does not even have the string "google" in the content, while it has the google affiliate box on the page this is not what I was looking for. The biggest penalty is this site: http://icannot.org [icannot.org] which does not have the string "google" in the content, display or embedded in the HTML. Anywhere. Violates point 3 of their read me first , that states all terms must be in the article.. Now maybe their cache is old. Either way it's wrong.

    3rd search was for an arbitrary string "motorcycles". While the search took quite a bit of time (maybe slashdot has something to do with this) most of the sites had nothing to do with motorcycles. A lot of them had to do with bicycles. Nice idea, the synonym engine -- too bad it doesn't work.

  • I couldn't find any links about cars that drive themselves (computer driven cars) there. But then I can't find anything about them on other search engines either. You'd think something that nifty would be on the web somewhere, hrm? ;)
  • http://207.202.129.66/cgi-bin/search?words=theinde x+sucks
  • I interpret "personal" as the vanity pages, where someone just slaps together a page about themselves and no content useful to someone else. Even though the DSL page you reference is hosted with a personal account wouldn't necessarily make it a personal page.
  • theIndex found nothing for this, but it did find 3 items for "teen porn".

  • by chazR ( 41002 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:40PM (#574336) Homepage
    OK. No porn. So, I search for 'sappho' It returns a bunch of non-porn gay/lesbian links. Good so far.
    Then I search for 'x-33' (a cool aerospace failure). No returns.
    Then I search for 'porn'. One link. A lesbian resource site that turned up in the first search.
    Then (getting suspicious) I search for 'molniya' (both usual spellings) - a type of satellite orbit(OK, it's a bit obscure). No hits.

    Next, it gets interesting. I try 'sappho' again. ( I got more than ten hits last time). I get no hits. Now I'm suspicious. So, I try a few other things. (telnet into another box, try it from there, etc). This thing *clearly* maintains state information. I *think* it does it by IP. It *may* do it by cookies.

    I am suspicious. Show us the source. How does it work?

    *Anything* that adds state information to HTTP and claims to be *new* needs some investigation.

    To the people who run TheIndex: If you want help from people here, show us the source. Some of us will help if you do that. Until then, I will advise people to be aware that you are gathering information from visitors without telling them you are doing it.

    Stop Post- You're not evil. You're incompetent. I just did a search for 'Lesbian' and it returned '9 sites found for sappho'. You are maintaning state information. But only because your back-end software sucks harder than raw vacuum. All I have to say is 'open the fucking code. You need the help badly'.

    Share and enjoy.

    PS - if you don't want to open the code, and you have a *lot* of money, I may be able to help. But check that it's a shedload of the folding stuff before you call - I may be easy, but I'm not cheap;-))
  • Hmm... for a company begging the slashdot audience to review it, you'd think slashdot would actually be in their index:

    Search for Slashdot on TheIndex. [207.202.129.66]
  • Thats it, /. Has really gone down the tubes now. The Index is just a capitalist conspiracy to drive the personal home pages off the net once and for all. Rumors have been spoken that they're involved with online retailers and consulting firms to woo people with the promise of a bloated result list and ugly design, then smack them with a bunch of boring links to useless "call here for more information" pages.

    Its all a Plot I tel you! beware The[EVIL]Index!
  • The Index is pretty bad... a simple [207.202.129.66]
    search for "slashdot" turns up 17 sites, none of them slashdot.
    A search [207.202.129.66] for "microsoft" turns up lots of pages, but none of them toward the top that i quickly scanned were microsoft's homepage.
    Maybe this is because no one's submitted these pages, but, how about a decent spider?

  • ...and into the oven monopoly. I'm referring to the CDs. Think about it. How many musicians work at "Best Buy" and are happy? How many starving musicians work at record stores and at least don't totally hate it? How does Best Buy stack up as a cultural center vs. your local record store? Where are you more likely to find out about the local scene? How is this any different from MS bundling IE? Will the government bring a case against Best Buy now for trying to lock record stores out of business, or will they wait until all the record stores fold, thus doing a good job for lawyers, but leaving everybody else high and dry?

    I think we know the answers to these questions.

  • Instead of more search engines that implement slightly different algorithms, we need an entirely new way of looking for things on the net.

    For example, tonight I needed a K6-2/500 processor to upgrade an old motherboard I have. I knew these would be for sale somewhere. I spent (er, LOST) about 30 minutes of time before I found a place that would sell me one online.

    A lot of searches on popular sites for "K6-2" would turn up systems containing K6-2, on places that wouldn't sell the CPU alone. And then there were sites ABOUT CPUs that don't sell anything.

    (brainstorming) Maybe the next generation of search engines should take context into account. If I want to buy something, I want to look only at sites that sell things. If I want unbiased information, I want to look only at sites that don't sell things. And a lot of the problem with the net is that it can identify where things are, but not where things AREN'T.

    All the search engines have their own algorithms. None of them, AFAIK, will allow me to implement my own algorithms. Maybe I WANT Google's approach mixed with a little extra, like the addition of META tags. Maybe just the first three META tags. Maybe leave out META tags but only show me content from sites where the keyword appears on other subpages of the site.

    I don't know, but something oughta be done!
    --

  • there was an awesome article in Linux Journal about 12 months back that was a car that drove itself 900km's around italy I think... powered by linux perhap you could search for it there... or backorder :)
  • eco-protection agency breathing down your neck about protecting the forest

    Sorry - you loose all respect from me with the above display of ignorance. Maybe it would be better if you mowed the Rainforest down to raise cattle for a local McDonalds? Dont forget the chemical spewing plastics factory to produce PokemonPlasticPrizes for Happy Meals.
  • I just ran a few of the searches I recently used in looking up some Java info (like 'jar manifest class-path'), and it came up pretty empty. I have to say that mandating all of the words appear is quite a limitation, especially considering how well I spell.

    I'd also like to throw in my opinion with everyone else that a lot of useful things are held in peoples home pages. In fact I'd be more interested in seeing www.nottheindex.com, that JUST indexed personal home pages and ignored corperate web sites (perhaps you could allow magazine web sites). That would probably filter out 99% of the useless links I get from my searches...
  • The index has more than a long way to go. I just searched for "slashdot". The first page of 17 matches did not contain slashdot anywhere on it. bleah!
  • You don't even have to use obscure Japanese stuff. Just type in 'xxx' and the 5th link you get is http://majesticescorts.com/.

  • You need to index everything possible!!! not just the stuff you like.... Personal web sites are a lot better then many coporate shit sites. I tried lots of warez sites and they are not in the index either. INDEX EVERYTHING the trick to a good search engine is massive content that is easy to filter through.........
  • > eco-protection agency breathing down your neck > about protecting the forest

    > Sorry - you loose all respect from me with the > above display of ignorance. Maybe it would be
    > better if you mowed the Rainforest down to
    > raise cattle for a local McDonalds? Dont forget
    > the chemical spewing plastics factory to
    > produce PokemonPlasticPrizes for Happy Meals.

    You know what pisses off people in developing countries? Westerners placing the environment over our own people. All else being equal, the environment must be protected. But often developing countries cannot afford to protect the environment. Many conservationists don't seem to grasp this. We don't have a choice!

    How much is a human life worth in terms of the environment? If you don't let us cut down those trees/fish that reef/mine that iron *some of our people will die* (or live in poverty and filth) that would otherwise have lived. It is not right to ask us to make that sacrifice for you or for future generations. If you don't want the Malaysian forest to come down, then *go to Malaysia* and find a way (read:funding) to get the people what they need *or* don't whine about the rainforest and castigate "these ignorant Third-Worlders".

  • Kuala Lumpur (don't ask me why it translates to "mud cove" - I didn't name it)

    It's cause Kuala Lumpur was/is a swamp. I remeber reading about it in an article about the skyscraper there. Don't worry, Washington, D.C. was also built on a swamp.

  • This thing sucks. I tried a very general catagory like linguistics (after a no-hit "Rhetorical Structure Theory") and it gave a hug pile of unrelated crap:

    1 : Pennsylvania Sports Hall Of Fame
    2 : (no title)
    3 : Short History Of Machine Tools
    4 : Korea Ssireum Research Institute
    5 : Darice Inc.
    6 : Captain Forbes House Museum
    7 : (no title)
    8 : Annwn Alternative Celtic rock.
    9 : Panama-California Exposition, 1915-1916
    10 : Kyler Dedicated to Kylers and Kyler genealogy.

    Can we get any worse?

    If you want a real search engine that handles synomyns, try oingo.com. There backend is supported by a true ontology.

    Anm
  • Well, CDs are $10 in the US if they're from the Dischord record label. All their CDs are labelled clearly, something like "This CD costs $10".

    Dischord was founded by Ian Mackaye, among others, whose band Fugazi makes sure that all its concert tickets cost only $5.
  • Id have to say that i really doubt that this will cause the variety of cds to go down... the markup that the record company has is so large, this wont even put a dent in their profits...

    in fact, this doesnt mention that the wholesale price is dropping, so the record companies are charging the same price they always have...

    doesnt matter to me a whole lot anymore, ive pretty much stopped buying that mainstream crap, and i couldn't be happier... small labels are cheaper, and the musics better...

  • You know what? I think I may have confused it by using by BACK button, instead of the sanctioned "click here for a new search" button.

    If you'll notice - I got a large number of "no result" pages - so I wasn't "refining" a search.
  • by delmoi ( 26744 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:18PM (#574356) Homepage
    The Ugly website for finding boring stuff!

    Seriously, while I think pr0n filtering is a good thing in a search engine (since pr0n types seem intent on spamming them), it should be disableable.

    Also, you're engine seems to do nothing but find links to bussnesses, and nothing more. a search for "Perl" turned up one link for swimming instruction, and about 99 links for web design companies. looking for "COM ATL" (a microsoft technology) came up with 6 hits, all of them companies (web design companies actualy, witch is strance beacuse ATL is only tangentaly related to the web).

    It seems pretty worthless for anything I'd do, I'm not in the market for a web design company, and I haven't been able to find anything but that...
  • by sulli ( 195030 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:42PM (#574364) Journal
    From the CD price war article:

    "Right now, the discount retailers are just absorbing the loss, but this is worrying for everybody in the industry because it sets the tone at the consumer level that CDs should be $10 or less," said one music distribution exec.

    Well, CDs should be $10 or less. And now everyone knows that!

  • . I would like to see Malaysia left alone to focus its resources as it sees fit, on the poor and needy.

    Um, how exactly do you expect it to 'focus' resources without trying to develop them first. If Malaysia can develop an information economy, they would have a lot more money to throw at social problems.

    It amazes me that people fail to realize this...
  • While it looks like this will eventually be a good place to look for stuff, it's failed several tests so far, and jumbled all but one.

    A search for "sancho games" failed to bring up Sancho Games [sanchogames.com]
    A search for "White Wolf" (... productions, ... games, white wolf by its self) failed to bring up White Wolf [white-wolf.com]
    A search for "Disney" brought up Disney-MGM (not quite their home page, but close) as the 677th result, but never actually turned up www.disney.com [disney.com]
    Searching for "Slashdot" failed to turn up Slashdot [slashdot.org], though it nabbed a bunch of knockoffs and generic linux info.

    I could understand a search for microsoft not turning up anything, on the basis that Microsoft isn't family-friendly, but of 3096 hits, doesn't Microsoft (for any reason, good, bad, *or* ugly) deserve at very least to be in the top 25%?

    Success!: A search for "In Nomine" brought up Steve Jackson Games [sjgames.com], as did a search for "Steve Jackson" but "sjgames" got me bupkis.

    A search for "Milton Bradley" came up with AXIS & ALLIES - Games from Hasbro Interactive and Hasbro [axisandallies.com] as the first hit. To be fair, the second search result that comes in when I search for "Hasbro" is a game by Milton Bradley. While equitable, I'm not sure this is what people are looking for...


    While I commend you guys on the effort, and several years of dedicated work, it's got at least a few more years' worth of work to go before it starts getting usable for everyday searching.
  • by adubey ( 82183 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:51PM (#574370)
    The TheIndex people didn't say what underlying technology they're using, but so far, I'm not impressed.

    The fundamental idea that underlies Google (and many of the new ideas in information extraction) is the idea of references with authority. In other words, you are only a good webpage if other good webpages point to you. Maybe, two years ago, you might argue that doesn't work, but today the evidence is right there are www.google.com [google.com].

    This concept helps Google avoid porn and stupid webpages (unless that's what you're looking for ;) without manual sorting. It seems as if TheIndex fundamentally relies on manually sorting webpages into "good" and "sucky" piles. That means that it will never have as many pages indexed as Google (or altavista, or inktomi, or...). In the few trials I've done, TheIndex not only does worse than Google, but also worse than other popular searching tools.

    Conclusion: TheIndex sucks, the suckiness is due to a fundamental technological inadequacy. It does not push the state of the art, but, rather, is a step backwards.
  • Ok, I'm not going to be insulting. But many browsers have an option to warn you before accepting cookies. If you are observing behavior that makes you think "cookies", find that option before making a claim like this.
  • How many starving musicians work at record stores and at least don't totally hate it? How does Best Buy stack up as a cultural center vs. your local record store? Where are you more likely to find out about the local scene? How is this any different from MS bundling IE?

    What are you gibbering on about? There is close to no similarity. First, Microsoft is the sole (legal) original distributor of Windows, IE, and Office. Best Buy is the sole original distributor of nothing. They buy from companies above them. Microsoft used their position of power to force other companies (ISPs, Apple) to limit distribution of Netscape. Has Best Buy used their position to limit distribution of music to other stores? If so, please let us know, that would be very important news!

    The only similarity is that Best Buy appears to be taking a loss on certain CDs, perhaps with the intention of undercutting and ruining their competition. Microsoft's use of this technique (giving IE away for free), was a relatively unimportant action.

    I don't see any real risk from Best Buy. If any company is going to crush local stores, I'm guessing it will be Walmart.

  • I don't know that synonyms work so well...
    • Searching for "Java" turned up a page full of results about coffee. Refinining it to "Java Programming" still didn't turn up the Sun website, the Java Tutorial, or any links to the API docs.
    • Searching for "Palm" turned up lots of things about palm trees and foot pain(?), and refining it to "palm pilot" still didn't find palm.com or any of the main PDA sites.

    There are NO porn or personal websites.

    Then why did it turn up http://members.aol.com/toomuchsug/mp3.html [aol.com]? Obviously a personal website.

    If you are going to create a family oriented search engine, don't print things like:

    'Love is the answer, but while you are waiting for the answer sex raises some pretty good questions.' -Woody Allen

    when a search fails. "Mommy, who's woody and what's sex?"

    wish
    ---

  • Dude, I've been in IT since 1981, a BBS sysop since 1986, an internetted BBS owner/operator since 1990, a web user since 1995, a web developer since 1996, and have owned my own web development firm since 1999. I know about the price engines, it just didn't occur to me to use 'em. And while I'm happy to take my lumps every once in a while, I'll guess that we *all* spend a half-hour in searching hell every week or so.

    Getting searching right isn't just something minor, y'know. It's incredibly important. Obviously, with the net, we are awash in information to the point where we regularly drown. But with all that info around, we still don't have instant answers to the questions that we all ask. (For more on this point, see my article on weird questions that people have asked Jeeves [catalystinternet.com].)
    --

  • hmm.. I disagree with your conclusion that music only stores are dying. Actually what I see happening is CD stores still existing, but focusing on smaller, local bands and special edition "collector's item" CDs, released by the band itself. the selling point is not the CD but the included extra information.

    //rdj

  • Can someone tell me the definition of Borneo?

    dictionary.com [dictionary.com] says:

    An island of the western Pacific Ocean in the Malay Archipelago between the Sulu and Java seas southwest of the Philippines. It is the third-largest island in the world. The sultanate of Brunei is on the northwest coast; the rest of the island is divided between Indonesia and Malaysia.

    3rd largest island in the world; in the western Pacific north of Java; largely covered by dense jungle and rain forest; part of the Malay Archipelago
  • Amen! And I wouldn't mind seeing the members of the RIAA come crashing down if they can't reconcile themselves to lower prices.

    Problem is, they aren't the ones who are going to take the losses, ever. First to go are going to be the small local record stores who don't have the option to sell CDs as a loss leader, since that's their only business.

    After that, I fear, if music wholesalers simply must cut prices, they're going to start gouging the artists even more than they currently do. I just don't think BMG, for example, is ever going to hurt from this.

  • by -=[ SYRiNX ]=- ( 79568 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:22PM (#574385) Homepage
    Who in the hell wants that?!?
  • I did a serach for some PL/SQL commands. The first was "TO_DATE TO_CHAR" which yielded nothing. I then just did "TO_DATE" which yielded soem strange results, as if it were seaching for "to date".

    End result: I'll stick to Google and Altavista to find technical stuff.

  • by ZahrGnosis ( 66741 ) on Thursday December 07, 2000 @03:26PM (#574389) Homepage
    Okay, if I was at the right place, this new search engine has some real issues. Searching for "linux" was the only search I did whose first hit was one of the sites I'd expect to see. Even a search for "Slashdot" comes out a bit behind. I tried a few others and wasn't impressed.

    I even read some of their online FAQs... one said a search for "poultry" will turn up sites related to chickens, ducks, geese... er... I searched for "poultry"... no such luck.

    They don't say anything about the technology; perhaps they just need to crawl around a lot more sites before getting some things straight. I'm definitely in support of more alternative search engines. Google made heavy inroads late into the game; there's no reason someone else can't too. But so far, theindex.com isn't one of those innovators.

    Keep trying!

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