Ask Jeeves clustering feature is a result of work from its research labs. The search company eventually plans to give public previews of its research projects through a yet-to-be-launched Web site called Ask Jeeves Alpha. Unlike its larger competitors, though, Ask Jeeves does not plan to keep any projects in alpha mode for long. "The research work we do is very oriented to developing products," said Rahul Lahiri, Ask Jeeves vice president of product management for search. "At this point, were all about adding [research work] very quickly into the products."Teomas clustering technology also played a role in Ask Jeeves release of an improved relevancy algorithm for its image search, Gerasoulis said. Earlier this month, the company revamped the way it ranks results for images. It uses an image index from Picsearch. During his presentation, Gerasoulis conducted before and after searches on Ask Jeeves image search, showing how a search for "sunset" changed from results where images of sunsets were interspersed with seemingly random images of people and logos to results more exclusively showing pictures of the setting sun. Separately this week, Ask Jeeves took another step in supporting the Mozilla open-source project. Ask Jeeves launched a Mozilla Firefox version of its browser-based search toolbar. Ask Jeeves previously has talked with the Mozilla Foundation about potentially creating an Ask Jeeves-branded version of Firefox and about contributing codes from Ask Jeeves desktop search product to the open-source community. Check out eWEEK.coms for the latest news, views and analysis on enterprise search technology.
To read an interview with Ask Jeeves CEO Steve Berkowitz, click here.