Search Engine Jargons

Recently, I have been doing lot of literature review related to information retrieval research and thought of building my own list of jargons used in the field of ‘search engines’.

Search Engine Related Jargons

  1. Relevance  – Asking a computer scientist ‘what is relevance’ is same as asking a philosopher ‘what is knowledge’. Although, the term ‘relevance’ is at the center of all information retrieval research, there is no explicit definition of it. If you are really interested to know more about relevance, then I would suggest reading this excellent paper: Relevance – the whole history
  2. Vertical Search  – search engine that focuses on a particular topic or category. Examples of vertical search engines are Google Scholar, Google Local, etc.
  3. Universal Search Engine – a search engine that blend listings from different vertical search engines. An Example of universal search is Google 2.0. Currently, the term ‘Universal search engine’ is not there in wikipedia, but you can read more about it here
  4. Meta Search Engine – a search engine that sends user requests to several other search engines and/or databases and aggregates the results into a single list or displays them according to their source.
  5. Intelligent Agents –  a software agent that assists users and will act on their behalf, in performing non-repetitive computer-related tasks. Intelligent agents are used for operator assistance or data mining
  6. Push based Information Service  – a style of Internet-based communication where the request for a given transaction originates with the publisher or central server. Examples of Push based information service are RSS, Atom, Google Alert
  7. Pull based Information Service – a style of internet-based communication where the request for a given transaction originates from the client. Examples of pull based information services are regular search engines such as Google.
  8. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) – the process of improving the volume and quality of traffic to a web site from search engines via “natural” (“organic” or “algorithmic“) search results for targeted keywords
  9. Precision
  10. Recall

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