A few months ago I blogged about a semantic search engine called Quintura. Recently, the developers of the product emailed me to say they’ve just released an online version of Quintura, which I’ve been playing with for the past couple of days.
Unlike the previous version that required a client download, this version is completely online and available directly from the home page. It’s works much more quickly, and the pesky movement of the search terms is now much more controlled and easy on the eye. I’m really quite impressed by the way the tool “works with you” to refine your search terms – something that I could see working really well with school-aged kids as they learn more about search terms and inquiry.
Once you enter a search word or phrase, it appears in red among a ‘cloud’ of related words and phrases. As you hover over these, additional sub-clouds appear. Clicking on any of these related words adds them to your search. As you carry this out, the list of search results in the lower panel is changing dynamically.
Another useful thing is that you can choose to search the web or images – both work just as simply and speedily. You can save any search cloud that you’ve created, send it to a friend ir invite a friend to use the product. In addition, there’s a very simple movie available that provides you with a tour of the product. Just today I’ve recommended this to a couple of schools to try out – so I’ll be interested in the feedback they provide.