Meta SE

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Multi and Meta Search Engines
A set of meta search engines that provides user options to customize results and groups findings by topic. Includes meta search options for general searches, financial searches, health/ medical and federal government searches. Using the general use metasearch engine with its clean layout, we found this metasearch engine easy to use, providing highly relevant listings from the ten search engines it covers and it organizes the findings into logical groupings. One of most useful metasearch tools currently available. Worth a try!

This meta search engine is fast, comprehensive and ranks findings by relevance! Searches 14 engines. Results ranked by relevancy and includes information about which search engine it came from. Currently one of the few meta search tools that supports regular searches, natural language searches, and advanced boolean searches, and knows which engines can handle which types of searches. If a page is listed in more than one search engine, Ixquick tells you which engines and how it was ranked. Does include some redundant listings but overall one of the best metasearch engines. Currently the default search engine on our browser.

Fast and comprehensive metasearch engine. Metor with its easy to navigate clean layout searches the top ten search engine databases, eliminates redundant listings providing highly relevant listings and live listings. In addition to its general metasearch function Metor has 24 topic specific metasearch channels. While limited in scope, these channels may be just the place to start a topic specific search. This metasearch engine's performance stands out above the crowd of look-a-like metasearch engines. Worth a try!

C4 is the improved version of the already excellent meta search engine cyber 411. Comprehensive, but occasionally slow searches of up to 16 search engines with one query. Present results in groups of ten, with duplicates and irrelevant listings included. C4 is the new version with additional search features and personalization features.

Easy to use meta search engine, now if they'd just get rid of all those annoying flashing banners. Includes the ability to control searches, and description for listings. Searches 8 engines quickly. Listings are average in relevancy, shown as one long easy to scroll page. Does include redundant listings.
CNet's specialty meta search engine. Unlike other meta search engines, this engine does more than search just the large databases like Lycos, or Excite. Based on your category selection it will meta search some of the most prominent specialty databases in that area. I.e. for Business searches, Bloomberg is one of the databases searched.

Specialty meta search engines are a great idea, of course the results you get will depend on the quality, range and scope of the databases searched. In the case of these are all top notch. Yet, yet we expected this idea to yield even more targeted and comprehensive results. Where this engine falls short is that its core meta search engine is limited compared and suffers in terms of relevance compared to some of the best meta search engines such as Ixquick. Where Search excels in the area of specialty meta searching and is definitely worth a try.

Provides an uncluttered, appealing interface for the beginning searcher. A good starting point for most searches, with redundancies eliminated. Urls for Ask Jeeves include:,,

A meta search engine that allows you to customize the number of listings shown. Fast and comprehensive with average relevancy for a meta search engine. Provides control over which engines searched. Results given in one long easy to scroll list with redundant listings. Unfortunately the home page design is cluttered, flashing banners next, preselected links, poor quality graphics, etc.

Competent meta search engine.

A good cleanly designed meta search engine. Now supposedly ranks sites according to their popularity in the search engines. Could still use improvement in the relevancy of results. Worth a try.

Karnak Library
Register to use this meta search tool. Queries take 8-20 minutes and the results page is emailed to you. Regularly updates its findings and keeps the information for you at the site. Findings are comprehensive and ranked by relevancy. In internet time this is a slooww search tool, but its ability to dig deep over time can't be beat. For ongoing research projects, this may be the search tool to try.

Competent meta search engine providing on target listings with a minimum of redundant pages. Providing online language translation of web pages.

One of the first well thought out meta search engines. Organizes results by type of site, commercial, educational, etc. Has since been surpassed by other meta search engines like Redesearch in comprehensiveness.

IqSeek Cluttered homepage design to this meta search engine. Does include ability to control which of 15 search engines are used, provides results in one convenient long list, unfortunately with redundancies included.

Searches over ten engines and directories. Results presented in groups of 10. No control over the search apparent. Relevancy is average, and identical listings from redundant sites included. Partner site SearchBug uses mama's meta search function with similar results.

This metasearch engine searches 4 of the top search engines plus 4 pay-for-placement engines. Now offers a clean and simple look and personalization options. Results were average in relevancy for a metasearch engine.

Fast comprehensive search of ten popular search engines. Provides one long list of listings, organized by search engine. Clean easy to use layout. The new Google of meta search engines. Attempts to find 10-25 listings from each engine.

Provides users with control of engines searched. Still lacking in customization of searches, relevancy of listings, personalization of home page and comprehensiveness as compared to some meta search engines that cover 14 search engines. Groups listings by search engine resulting in redundant listings.

Searches 9 of the top search engines. Lists the results by search engine on one long page. Easy to scan results but could be improved by integrating the results and ranking by relevancy. A good basic meta search engine. 

Category based directory of search tools. Click on a category and it gives you a choice of approximately six appropriate search and specialty search engines.

Unique format that you'll love or hate. Run a search on the 12 search engines and get up to 400 listings back, in the left column. Click on the green button to get an instant overview of the listing in the right hand column of your browser. This engine is fast, comprehensive and provides the all to common redundant listings associated with most meta search engines. Its worth a try and you may love it depending on how you like your results dished up. 

This meta search engine has an easy to read layout with just the right level of information including category links to news feeds, weather and TV listings. Performance as good as many meta search engines.

Web Search Wizard  
Helps you pick the best search tool for the task. Set up as a decision tree spread over a couple of web pages, just click on the type of information you're after and this tool provides with a set of recommended search engines best suited to your particular search task. A great idea, now it just needs to be expanded so its comprehensive and the decision tree needs to be refined so it works from one page, instead of multiple pages.

This attractive and easy to use meta search engine is better than average in performance, returning far to many pages from each individual site resulting in only a few sites being featured on each results page. Elimination of redundant listings would be a step in the right direction.

Meta search engine with competent performance. Is comprehensive and searches the largest databases but neglects to sift out similar listings from the same url.

A fairly clean and easy to use meta search engine with average comprehensiveness and relevancy. Missing user search controls. Results layout is awkward and hard to read. Only 20 listings per page.

Meta IQ  
Previously SearchEnginesGalore. Search 12 of the top search engines at one time, or individually (automatically selects 5 to start). Given the range of types of search engines (from popularity to general use) MetaIQ uses it should provide more relevant results. Includes a small "subject directory" of of search engines and selected sites. Does provide the ability to control search engines searched and results are provided in one long easy to read list. Now includes "Ask an Expert" for those questions you can't find an answer to on your own. Uses volunteer "experts" to respond to questions emailed in for many topic areas. We didn't test this feature but like the notion of tapping the knowledge of individuals.

Multi-engine search. Despite its drab homepage this is a competent meta search engine providing results of average relevancy in an easy to read format. Includes information about which search engine was used to find each listing.

A meta search engine using the same database as () with similar results above average results.

Powered by Mamma (see review above).

A directory of search engines and search engine tools.

New technology quasi meta search engine. Starting with a clean homepage design this search engine provides the ubiquitous query box. After entering your keywords and hitting the return key this engine does a preliminary sort and comes up with one or more core categories to search in the scrollable menu below the query box. If the category is appropriate (e.g. if you enter trimaran, it will suggest "sailboat"), the next step is to click on the search button for the actual search.

We like the effort to narrow the search via a preliminary search but does it improve the relevancy of the following search? In our tests we found only average relevancy of suggested listings. This could be due to the limited number of databases searched (only 3, DirectHit, Inktomi, Excite) and the lack of any filtering system to sort the results based on cumulative relevancy. Another annoying problem was the lack of a search box on the results page. I.e. you need to hit to return to the home page to start a search. Unlike some search engines which sit stagnant after their initial development we have high hopes for Simpli as they continue to work on the quality of this search tool. (read their press release)

Black Widow  
Meta search engine and links to core categories from the Open Directory Project. If meta search engines are a good tool and directories are another than putting the two together should create a killer search tool. Right? Given the mediocre performance of this meta search engine, low relevancy of listings, you're better off using a high quality meta search engine, one that searches the Open Project Directory such as: ZWorks.

One of the first and most commonly used meta search engines, dogpile searches 3 databases at a time and then asks if you want to search more. Provides options allowing you to select which databases to search Results are average in relevancy and is sequential mode of searching is more cumbersome than many of the newer, more accurate and comprehensive meta search engines.

Searches the most popular search engines. Graphics and results list are clunky.

An easy way to access 30 of the most popular search engines and meta search tools.

This meta search engine is fast, covering up to ? 20 search engines. To use this search tool first you need to find the query box on this poorly designed homepage. Once this engine starts, its a sprinter, returning up to 250 results. Unfortunately it runs in circles, returning many duplicate listings. Speed and comprehensiveness are high, if you don't mind wading through 100s of listings unorganized listings.

Meta search engine that groups pages by site. Use the features on the query form to customize your search.

This meta search engine is average in performance, returning far to many pages from each individual site resulting in only a few sites being featured on each results page. Elimination of redundant listings would be a step in the right direction.

An unimpressive meta search engine. Findings of average to below average relevancy.

AskScott queries you as to the type of search you are making. It uses your answers to lead you through a decision tree to a search engine best suited to a specific type of query. Unfortunately it doesn't appear to have been updated recently and depends on a limited number of engines.

Searches the top 12 search engines and presents results organized by engine in one long easy to read scrollable list.

Meta search engine providing the top 3 results from FAST, Altavista and Excite. Does allow searches to be limited by country.

Searches the top five search engines. Provides the top ten listings from each categorized by engine.

A meta search engine. Searches up to 10 engines at once, depending on how many you select. Results provided in hard to read typeface, with no information as to relevance or which search engine found.

Metacrawler simultaneously searches 12 of the Internet's leading search engines. Has the option to sort results by relevance, by source search engine, or by originating site. This popular search tool suffers from low relevancy of listings and has been left in the dust by the newer more accurate meta search engines.

Access the top seven search engines.

Searches the top six search engines. Results include many redundant listings.

Searches up to 12 engines including: Lycos, WebCrawler, Google, All The Web, Thunderstone, Infoseek, Direct Hit, HotBot, Excite, Galaxy, AltaVista, NationalDirectory and Usenet.

The Search Page  
220+ hyperlinks for people who want to search the Internet and World Wide Web (WWW) for something but don't know where to start.

A meta search engine that is supposed to search up to 37 search engines. Homepage design is cluttered and hard to use. Ability to control search engines limited and relevancy only average. Results pages are poorly laid out. In this case, more is not better.

Multiple query form for meta search and other search engines. This search tool is based on the idea that if meta search engines are a good idea, access to more meta search engines is even better. How do you spell "redundant?" Searching with multiple meta search engines is generally a waste of time. It makes far more sense just to pick one of the top ranked meta search engines, and use it.

Claims to be a meta search engine, but our tests found it only searched the Open Project Directory database.

Highway 61
Searches limited to Yahoo, Webcrawler and Excite. Does provide a quote to read while waiting for search results.

Awkward graphic interface and organization.

Average performing meta search engine. Includes far to many redundant listings. Provides links at the bottom of the page to 19 of the most popular individual search engines.

This meta search engine gets points for its comprehensiveness and its ability to enable users to customize searches, including a natural language query option and a family filter. Unfortunately relevancy doesn't appear to play a role in listings provided. 

Formerly SearchSpaniel (a mutt), Search123 is now an average performing meta search engine. It covers a limited number of databases. Unlike most current meta search engines that list all results together (and indicate which search engine they came from) this meta search engine just groups them by search engine giving the user the task of sifting through redundant listings.

Provides access to multiple search engines and a front door to Includes a pop up window on the left side of your browser for selecting which search engines to use. Unfortunately this was not operative using Netscape or Internet Explorer browsers operating from a Macintosh computer.

To find the best search engine for the job enter a word or a phrase and SmartBorg suggests a search engine to use. We love the idea, now if it just added value to the search process. In our tests we found its recommendations didn't always jive with what we were looking for. Overall it directed us to competent search engines but you'd could do just as well by starting with a good meta search engine or the appropriate specialty search engine.

Average performing meta search engine with cute surfy images next to each listing. Not our first choice of a search tool but not our last.

Average performing meta search engine. You can select which engines to search. Results grouped by engine and reflecting the relevancy of the individual engines.

An limited meta search engine covering only 4 search engines (2 of which use the same database). Results are average in accuracy (7 out of 10 where relevant) and include a high level of redundancy.

Uses confusing 4 frame layout to present search results from 4 popular engines.

Clumsy meta search engine that only searches two engines at a time. Searching of additional engines available. Includes links to the Open Project Directory for limited category searching. A rewrite of their basic algorthim is needed to search all search engines at once and provide an integrated results page with sites ranked by relevance as a growing number of other meta search engines have done. Not recommended. 

Poor layout and slow performance are less than clever. Metasearch results were average in relevancy. We did like the world news summary at bottom of the page, which is refreshed every 27 seconds.

Searches the top 5 most popular search engines. Very fast, but current page design is almost illegible.

This meta search engine has potential but its unrealized as of yet. Provides the ability to select up to 15 search engines. Unfortunately results are presented in confusing layout and include redundant listings. Use of this engine is buggy and regularly it freezes or dies while posting results pages.

Worse than average meta search engine with unappealing graphics, poor relevancy and an emphasis on promoting adult listings. Not recommended.

A version of the Open Project Directory which provides extremely limited results of poor relevancy.

You select from scrollable lists the 4 engines to search. It provides the search engines results pages in 4 frames, similar to All4One.

A simple way to search multiple search engines by category. Not a true meta search engine but provides access to 100s of search sources, many are just commercial sites with limited listings.

“A metasearch which returns results from three (3) pay-per-click engines in sequence (followed by MSN results to make it look a bit better): Goto, Kanoodle, and Findwhat. Serious web searchers should be aware that this doesn't offer a fair cross-section of major search engines and directories“ Reviewed by Andrew Goodman, 

Not a meta search engine but rather a one stop for opening search engine windows. Enter your search terms once and watch up to 18 browser windows open at once. Another way to annoy people rather than help them.

Metasearch 9 of the major search engines at once. Results provided in a scrollable frames wiindow. Listings were silightly lower than average in relevancy.