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New test of search engine relevance

VeriTest has made a test of search engine result relevance for the Inktomi search engine company. The goal of the testing was to compare the relative quality of the top 10 web documents returned by Inktomi, Google, Wisenut, Fast, Teoma and AltaVista. The result listings were judged according to certain relevancy guidelines.
Weighted results show that Inktomi and Google are very close as regards content relevance, while the others lag somewhat behind. The study found, however, that the rate of acceptable documents fell more rapidly in positions two through ten for WiseNut, Teoma, AltaVista and Fast AlltheWeb than it did for Inktomi and Google. We have not been able to control the test results. In any case, quality testing of search results is a very difficult task, indeed. Nevertheless, it seems that VeriTest has done its best to obtained balanced results.
That being said, it is interesting to note that VeriTest did a survey for Google in 2000, where Google came out on top. In the Webmaster World discussion forum, the Google representative, GoogleGuy, points out that when AltaVista commissioned eTesting Labs/VeriTest to compare search engines, AltaVista was judged the most relevant (2000).
Anyone who has worked in marketing and politics knows that the trick is not to lie, but to find the indicators that tell your story. The most interesting thing about this study is not that Inktomi comes out on top, but that all of the search engines are so close. Obviously the non-Google segment of this industry has done a lot to catch up with the world leader.
Yahoo! is clearly contemplating a switch from Google to Inktomi at their search site. This is the kind of report that might strengthen such a resolve.

Source: Pandia
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