LookSmart is one of the larger and better-known directories. It is used by AltaVista, AltaVista Australia, Anzwers, MSN Search, and Go2Net. Use the table of contents on the left to navigate this review.
Databases: LookSmart, LookSmart Live, Direct Hit, AltaVista, RealNames.
Default Operation: Multiple search terms are processed as an AND operation by default.
Boolean Searching: LookSmart automatically combines all terms with a Boolean AND. It does not support use of the + or - symbols, any Boolean operators, or nesting.
Proximity Searching: No phrase or proximity searching is available.
Truncation: LookSmart search terms are automatically searched as a stemmed search. In other words, the results should include all forms of the term including plural, singular, and tense.
Case Sensitivity: LookSmart has no case sensitive searching. Using either lower or upper case results in the same hits.
Stop Words: Common words are ignored.
Sorting: The sites appear to be sorted randomly, but they may be ordered by relevance. If a LookSmart search fails to find any hits in LookSmart, the search is automatically passed on to AltaVista. While this can be handy, it is rarely as effective as a well structured search run directly on AltaVista.
Display: LookSmart first displays categories which contain matches. Then sites are displayed with their title hyperlinked to the URL, a two line description, and a linked connection to the category in which the site is listed. After the sites, results from AltaVista are displayed.
Size of LookSmart : LookSmart has over 2,300,000 unique URLs according to the company with 250,000 categories and 200 editors, as of Oct. 2000.
Ratings: LookSmart does not include ratings.
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