People don’t know how to search

One of the great secrets of the web is laid bare by the new UI of Froogle. It now lists a bunch of recent searches.

What you’ll discover is that when it comes to finding things online, people are dolts.

Some samples?



and the always popular


This reinforces my contention that Google never succeeded because of the vast size of their database. Who needs 2 billion matches for Britney Spears? Google works because the UI is so simple and because the sophisticated users (the sneezers who spread the word) discover stuff they like–and then folks who search for “Web” believe that they’ve got the best answers.

I think we need a search engine that does a great job on the 2,000 most common search phrases. Handbuilt, useful answers to bad searches. Better still, why not train the search engine to ask clarifying questions after you’ve done a bad search? Type in “shoes” to froogle and it could give you a second page that asks for your gender, or price range or size or intended use…

But I digress.