Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Google CSE Goes International

Walt Whitman said that he liked to write in iambic pentameter because there is beauty in constraints. I think about that often when I use Google Custom Search Engine, which is at least once a day. Today, Google announced that its platform for searching inside a finite list of domains is now available for the first time in 40 different languages. (As UK semantic web developer Tom Morris pointed out, like all web projects CSE was always was international - it was just ignoring it.) See our in-depth write up of Google CSE's excellence in September.

Now people with non-native English reading website audiences can make their sites searchable in other languages . Now people around the world who are researching any particular topic can easily build a search engine, with an interface in their own language, that brings back results from only the key reference sites in their field. The Custom Search API, leveraged to build even more tools like the increasingly popular Lijit (disclosure: a sponsor, but also a simply fascinating service), can now be leveraged in multiple languages as well.

English may be the dominant language of the web, but there's no reason for it to be the only language of particularly useful web services. It certainly isn't the only language in which other forms of poetry are written.

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