Searching the BlogSphere

This search is customized
for my site Alpern.org
How this works

Trusted Blog Search Tool

A search box that lets readers search the web, your site, or blogs you read.

Use it on Your Site - go to this page to get custom code you can copy.

Requirements

To create a custom 'blogs I read search' you need:

If your not sure about either of requirements, just give it a shot. I do the best I can to auto-detect the needed files. If you still can't make it work send me an email with a description of your problem.


Using Weblogs to Improve Search

Investigating the "blogosphere" is interesting, but not nearly as interesting as recognizing that there are blogospheres. And these spheres are neither wholly separate nor wholly integrated with the rest of the network. What constitutes a border for such a sphere? What does this differentiation mean to the structure of the whole.

- Alex Halavais

Until the semantic web arrives the best method we have to understand a users point of view is to examine the RSS feeds they subscribe to. I currently read RSS feeds from over 70 websites. This list of RSS feeds includes friends, publications, and domain expects; all people whose opinions I value.  If Googling my weblog is like searching by backup brain, then searching all sites in my RSS news aggregator is like searching the brains of people I respect and find interesting. 

Sometimes I want to know what the world thinks                         (google)
Sometimes I want to know what I think                                       (my weblog)
Sometimes I want to know what those I respect think                   (blogs I read)

 

Sample Search Results

When would you use this tool?

            Where was that?

Tracy is a marketing manager who uses a weblog and RSS news aggregator to communicate internally and to stay on top of her competitors and the industry.  She remembers reading an article a few weeks ago which has suddenly become relevant, but she can’t seem to find it.  She’s done a Google search, but the topic was obscure and she’s having trouble locating it. 

            What do you think?

Richard is a lawyer in Boston who uses his weblog and the network of feeds by other domain experts to learn about important new regulations and discuss and debate how they’ll affect his business.  Richard just heard about a new law that’s passed Congress.  He’s read accounts by the popular presses, but he wants to see what his colleges are thinking.

How it Works

            I’m using the Google Soap API and PHP to do a series of domain specific searches with the site:foo.com  advanced operator

Where do I get the list of news feeds to search? I scan your blog home page for:

  I try to auto-detect these files by looking for a link in the HTML headers. If I can't find one, then I try a regular expressions, and the default locations.


muck around in the PHP Code

The HTML above still submits search requests though my server.  If you want to run it all yourself or make changes here are the PHP source files. This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License.Creative Commons License

 

Project Philosophy, Usability, and ToDo's

Acknowledgments - Thank you to those who made this project possible


© Copyright 2003 Micah Alpern
Problems? Suggestions? Email me

© Copyright 2003 Micah Alpern.
Last update: 4/3/2003; 11:48:47 AM.