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Multi-paned search UI in testing at Google

It's cool that Google has gotten around to implementing the multi-pane search interface. Wags are saying that Google copied Ask on this, but really, it was Ask that copied A9's innovative interface. And now that Udi Manber, who built A9, is running search products at Google, it makes sense to see him testing an evolution of those ideas.

A9's interface (which was powered under the hood by Google results at the time) didn't seem to get traction when it launched. But those ideas, deployed on the Real Thing, could be a different story.

My next hope is to see some personalization come out on the results.

I have some personal skepticism that either multiple columns or p13n is a good idea. But it would be nice to see Google explore those.

Comments (1)

Well, we can point at things to say A9 copied others, too :)

We did ponder talking about Google coping its own SearchMash experimental site, but I think Ask really does deserve the main hat tip here.

It alone among the majors came out with something really daring. A9 had no real audience to lose. Ask did. I can't say that the pane treatment is a success for them, but I do think having had Ask try it, Google is more willing to be daring.

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