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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Google Custom Search For Site Neighborhood

The Google CSE program (CSE means “Custom Search Engine”, a part of Google Co-op) now comes with a new feature. “On the Fly” CSEs allow you to place a code snippet on any of your pages to create a little CSE box; this box will now search through all sites linked from your page.

Here’s a sample box that goes through all links placed on this blog page you’re looking at:

This comes in quite handy if you have any place where you collect a bunch of external links and you want to add a search engine for them. For example, I collect my other sites at, and previously had to add them manually to create an “Outer Court CSE.” Now I can have the same effect more automated, and I also don’t have to remember to adjust my CSE settings (as long as I keep the links on up-to-date). Directories and blogrolls are natural fits for this feature too, Google suggests.

Note that you don’t have to include a search box snippet to get this to work. You can also use this feature for any site that doesn’t have the snippet included by just visiting the “On the Fly” homepage and using the upper-right search box. This search, for instance, covers all sites that are in the “neighborhood” of the Search Engine Land blog.

Additionally, I’ve created a little iGoogle gadget which provides this search feature for you. (I also offered something similar in 2004 called NeighborSearch, but it was based on the Google SOAP API, which is now unsupported.)

[Via the Google CSE blog.]


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