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Thursday, May 13, 2010

Google’s "Something Different" Shows Other Items of a Group in Results

Age-old Google Sets is one of my favorite Google Labs release. You enter two or so related terms and it will find many more terms from that group it derives. It’s similar to the later released Google Squared program. Now, Google offers a search feature in the left-hand side bar titled “Something Different”, and it’s sort of like Google Sets has made it to the SERPs. Entering zebra in, for instance, returns “giraffe”, “hippo”, “elephant” and more. Search for Superman, and Batman, Supergirl, Aquaman and a bunch of others show up. There’s no chance yet though to expand the small five item list to something longer, so I guess it’s back to Google Sets for that.

On a side-note, above screenshot illustrates a triple clash of approaches on Google’s SERPs: the top navigation bar offers you to search for images, the left hand navigation offers you to search for images, and the image onebox lets you search for more images (for what it’s worth, there’s even a related search at the bottom suggesting to you to search for zebra pictures, and you can also restrict results to “Sites with images”). Offering different approaches for the user to get to the same goal is nothing bad per se (you may be catering to different tastes and important different use cases), though offering options also comes with the price of clutter, so they need to be justified. Do you think there is enough justification for not one but three and more ways to get to images here?

[Thanks David!]


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