Blog search engine Technorati has introduced a new "Blog Finder" service. In contrast to its main search index, which allows users to search individual blog posts, this allows users to search for blogs that deal with specific subjects. The indexing system is based in part on the tags that individual bloggers apply to their posts and blogs – meta-data about content provided directly by authors.
Elsewhere, Technorati’s search page looks more like an “advanced search” function, an example of how information users are moving toward more sophisticated capabilities for Web search (and, by implication, away from the Clean White Page that has been such a success for Google). It seems some users are willing to accept more complexity in return for precision and for avoiding the list of 8 million results of uncertain relevancy that the Googles of the world return to them.
The blog and RSS worlds are ripe for the kind of enhancements that organize and make finding and using blogs and feeds more efficient. Just as magazines and journals spawned an abstracting and indexing (A&I) industry to help people find stuff, blogs are now getting their own tools. This time, however, the relief is coming not from the traditional A&I publishers; they seem to have left the room. Thousands of students will enter universities this fall unfamiliar with the traditional abstracting and indexing tools used to find information in their fields, but many will be intimately familiar with the way tech-based solutions such as Google News and Technorati are organizing vast content domains. Many information industry companies have ceded territory to tech-based interlopers by not getting there first.