With two coconuts and some bamboo… sorry, wrong professor. THIS professor is Clement Yu from the University of Illinois at Chicago, and he’s come with a metasearch engine for news. What impressed me was its scope — it covers about 1800 news search engines across about 200 countries and territories. After all that it has the terribly pedantic name Allinonenews; you can try it at www.allinonenews.com.
From the front page of the search engine you’ll find some top news stories already picked for you. And the lead story is … the Michael Vick plead? The AG resignation? No; the end of the Notting Hill Carnival. Actually I find that rather refreshing. (Don’t worry; the Vick and Gonzales stories are both on the front page if you really want to read them.) A nav on the left of the page shows several other categories through which you can browse.
Searching is by simple keyword. Feeling festive I did a search for carnival. I got a small set of results (about 30) with an invitation to click for more results. I did that and got a total of 288 results.
I could see no way to list the results by date — not good — but I did see a link to get results in RSS format. Results include the usual title-summary-URL. From the front page of results I noted sources from the UK, Germany, and Australia. (Searching for Shinzo Abe brought equally diverse results.) A link at the top of the search results allows you to leave comments about the quality of what you’re finding.
It should be noted that all sources searched should truly be considered search engines … CNN is not in my opinion a news search engine, but a source. But that’s okay. Still a wide variety of results here covering all kinds of sources.
Did I mention the RSS feeds? AllinOne has a page devoted to them. You can get keyword-based feeds, topic based feeds, or feeds from popular queries (interesting idea.)
This site is so not Web 2.0 — at least not in the design sense. The stark layout and simple logo may leave you thinking it’s 2002. I don’t care. I liked the range of sources the search result got, and the depth (some queries got me stories from back in 2000.) For a developing/extremely major story I don’t know if I’d use AllinOne; for a basic search/overview I like it a lot. Now if only I could easily get it to search results by date…