I mistitled my last entry and forgot to put in the Search part. I was lucky enough to be selected as a member of the MSN Search Champs team. As we all know Microsoft is attempting to enter the search engine race and invited us to Redmond for a preview of what is to come. All the content was under NDA, but let me just say I wasn’t blown away like I was hoping to be. I primarily use Google and am satisfied with it at this time, but think competition is always good since it helps drive innovation. Now, on Day 2 Microsoft Research came in and showed us some things that I wanted to see the first day. This was not under NDA and you can actually check out some of their work on the MS Research site. They ran a search and then at the top of the window there was a slider bar that would filter the results for your personal preferences based on your email folder, documents, etc. that you setup on a small utility. This Personalized Search program seemed to work slick and was impressive. The MSR answerbot, AskMSR, was also a cool program that helped answer specific questions rather than searching just keywords.
As a mobile device enthusiast, I was glad that Microsoft actually had a forum where we could provide our input since there is NO ONE out there with a search engine geared towards mobile devices. As smartphones and connected devices become more popular someone can easily jump into this area and take the market lead. The first version of MSN Search probably won’t be optimized for mobile devices, but they could easily make a couple coding tweaks just to get it formatted for mobile devices and take the lead here. I do use the Google/Palm version, but Google hasn’t put any efforts into optimizing the search engine for mobile devices. I’ll be discussing some of what I want to see in a blurb tomorrow on PDAGeek.com so check there if you want to see more of my thoughts.