July 2, 2008 1:20 AM   Subscribe

Viewzi is a kind of metasearch tool built around 'views'. It's kind of the antiGoogle in that it's not so much for quick answers as for idle looking around, and it's all about the UI, but it's interesting and pretty and kind of fun. Beta, naturally, and fully buzzword compliant. Flash haters will probably hate it. Usability people may have an aneurism. That's OK. [via]

Plans for the future (it's only been public since last month, apparently) include the ability to create new views, specify your default view and limit your selection to views you find useful, amongst other stuff, including, of course, an API.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken (9 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
Sort of like Opera's quick view. Except for the usability part. But nice anyway.

Google dominance could be wiped away in a weekend. More and more Google gives me haystack search results and I end up searching for the needle manually. Any similar engine with a cool UI that shortens the needle search would quickly cut into Google's market share.
posted by three blind mice at 1:37 AM on July 2, 2008

Given the results of my first search, I'd say it's kid-safe. Which means I can't see much use for it.
posted by Citizen Premier at 1:39 AM on July 2, 2008

Interesting idea but far too shiny and scrolly, and too many (one) cute, satisfied customers grinning at me after Viewzi™ emboldened and richened their web experience.
posted by fire&wings at 2:26 AM on July 2, 2008

Pretty impressive video search feature. I punched in 'ashtanga' and selected the "Video X3" view and I really like what I see, bits of vids splattered all over the screen. Comical -- the BlinkX vids show up with some of the vid streaming in what looks like a gif. Overkill. But cute.

I'm assuming that when this thing is out of beta I'll be able to select whatever sites I want to look at for whatever type search I'd like, cloud it up. That I like.

I use the Firefox NoScript extension and I don't like that I've got to allow yahoo to peek at what I'm looking for/at; maybe they're married, maybe Yahoo is throwing some bread into their pockets in exchange for getting to see what I'm wanting to see. Annoying.

It's flash but it's fast, slick.

I do not like the yahoo bit. That said, it's cute as a bugs ear. I think I like it.
posted by dancestoblue at 2:34 AM on July 2, 2008

This is indeed pretty good for browsing.
posted by DU at 4:08 AM on July 2, 2008

Remember Billy Crystal's Fernando character on SNL years ago? "It is better to look good than to feel good, my darlings..."

The thumbnail menu on the top bar is clunky and annoying.

Totally, totally useless for the sort of (obscure, boring) things I usually search around for. I need text/url context for those. If I want simple text, why dig two layers deep for it here when I can go to Google?

The more directed views (Recipes, Weather, Celebrities) offer you results sometimes when the context makes no sense, and sometimes no results when the context does (I put in the title of a Police album in the Celebrities view and got nothing; I was expecting pics of Sting at least).

Too many views are just alternate entries into other sites that have their own interfaces that might not be perfect or ooh-cool, but I'm already very used to and comfortable with (like YouTube). or Hype Machine are much more satisfying to me to search for music.

But the most damning comment you can make about it: doesn't appear to be much good for porn searches. That alone could make it die on the vine.
posted by gimonca at 5:53 AM on July 2, 2008

So I was wondering, where do those views come from? Some of them have author names attached to them, like "By So-and-So". Can users contribute and upload their own views? That would be cool. Or, are the views just coming from residents of their own cubicle farm?

Digging a little, I found this. Cubicle farm with a drippy attitude.

If they do let people upload and share their own views (as stavros suggests), that would be very interesting. It would also immediately conflict with the goody-goody corporate sheen that I'm seeing this morning. There would be more porn, more pirates, less of the herding sheep into Epicurious and other designated partners.
posted by gimonca at 6:06 AM on July 2, 2008

the BlinkX vids show up with some of the vid streaming in what looks like a gif. Overkill. But cute.

Actually I love that part. All three blocks of results (the youtube and veoh ones too) should have those gifs and you'd have a big crazy futuristic wall of content to scroll left and right to. If I owned a flying car with a video screen, this would have to be what it would look like as I darted around above the metropolis.
posted by cashman at 6:49 AM on July 2, 2008

I like it. It reminds me of Piclens but with no need for a plugin.
posted by hojoki at 3:46 PM on July 2, 2008

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