Some interesting attempts at clustering or building maps of web search results (tip of the blog hat to EduResources). I cannot say I have found either of these more intuitive, but they are interesting.
Mooter is beta, but not bad. It sports a Google-like search engine (though there is no information or explanation what “mooter” is or does). A search result displays your query in the center of a map, with clusters of related terms around it, and clicking on the cluster essentially yields a Google-like list of results, though now a cluster is more refined than your original search.
For example I ran a query on “learning object” (It looks like you can copy/paste the URLs of search results, but this seems to fail due to a session variable) and you get this “map”
Mooter search results on “learning object”
Mooter has created clusters of additional searching times that might help me zero in on a more refined search- and offers 3 sets of clusters to choose from for this search. Who knows how it picks the clusters?? But a click on the “repositories” cluster yields:
You can jump to any other cluster from here as well.
The results may not be as comprehensive as Google, but I like the attempt at presenting search results in a different arrangement than just top to bottom.
Now Kartoo does something similar, but unlike Mooter’s spartan display, Kartoo’s results are all inside Flash, with a cute, but hardly necessary “genie”, and little icons for the results, plus relationships that pop up on mouseovers. Again, I ran the query on “learning object”, but the results seem to more general, most of the first screen picked up education providers like it was a query on just “learning” (maybe I needed quotes around the search terms?):
Kartoo search results on “learning object”
On this quick and completely unscientific comparison, I found Mooter a bit more usable and the results more web friendly. I cannot say I would run back and use them, but it is good to see some different ways to present information that can appeal to visual learners.
The post "Mooter-ing and Kartoo-ing: Graphical Displays of Search Results" was originally pulled charred and crispy from a smoky charred oven at CogDogBlog (http://cogdogblog.com/2004/03/mooter-ing/) on March 10, 2004.