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9/11/2007
03:36 PM
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Blog Search Engine Technorati Tries New Approach

The initial reaction in the blogosphere tends toward damning with faint praise or outright dismissal.

Technorati, the blog search site, today introduced a redesigned home page and a new Topics tab that displays a vertical crawl of selected recent blog posts.

"Each topic features blog posts from many of the best blogs out there to help you discover what's going on," said Dorion Carroll, VP of engineering, in a blog post. "The posts are refreshed frequently to reflect breaking news, new opinions, and the latest from the Web. We've set out to help you find some great blog posts to read and we've organized them by easy-to-browse topics."

Whether the new approach will be welcomed by Internet users remains to be seen. But the initial reaction in the blogosphere tends toward damning with faint praise or outright dismissal.

TechCrunch's Duncan Riley said, "It would be easy to be unkind to Technorati, and some may suggest that the move today is a case of shuffling the deck chairs on the Titanic," in reference to the company's organizational setbacks, before concluding "in terms of focus, Technorati Topics is at least a step in the right direction."

"It's a Britney Spears-style comeback that's unlikely to turn around the fortunes of the troubled search engine," said Sean P. Aune of Mashable. "We'll give them time, however, since further development is promised."

"For now, Technorati's topics holds little value for me, and I think it would be more of a distraction than a helpful source of information," said Josh Catone of Read/WriteWeb.

"When I first heard about it, I thought Technorati Topics might be going after Techmeme.com, but having seen it, I think [Techmeme founder] Gabe Rivera can sleep easily," said Mathew Ingram, technology writer with The Globe and Mail in Toronto. "Topics is just a scrolling list of posts with no organization or ranking that I can see, whereas Techmeme (for all its inscrutability) pulls threads together for you and makes it easy to see a story evolve over time."

Carroll said further changes are coming. Evidently, they can't come too soon.

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