Ask Jeeves Inc said yesterday it has improved its web search technology and added to the functionality of the ask.com front-end. The firm launched personalized and localized search options, as well as an upgraded Teoma search engine.
The company said Teoma, the hard search engine underneath the interface, has been altered to provide improved index freshness on frequently changing sites, and boasts an index now of over two billion English-language pages.
Teoma uses a type of link analysis that relies on a notion of hubs and authorities that form communities of interest, on the theory that web sites on similar topics tend to cluster together and rate each others’ popularity.
Ask Jeeves also confirmed that it expects to ship a desktop search product before the end of the year, without revealing any extra details. In June, the firm bought Tukaroo Inc, which made software that indexes local documents on the fly.
The Jeeves character himself has also been redesigned, in what the firm calls an extreme makeover. To this reporter’s unschooled eye, the butler graphic appears to have merely lost a few pounds from the gut and chin, and ditched the pinstripe jacket in favor of more up-market garb.