HOME  |  NEWS  |  BLOGS  |  MESSAGES  |  FEATURES  |  VIDEOS  |  WEBINARS  |  INDUSTRIES  |  FOCUS ON FUNDAMENTALS
  |  REGISTER  |  LOGIN  |  HELP
naperlou
User Rank
Blogger
dumbing down search
naperlou   10/22/2012 10:40:53 AM
NO RATINGS
Gregory, you have run into a real problem with search engines on the Internet.  This is a problem of favoring speed over accuracy.  I guess that for free search that is what you get.  Oh, wait a minute, it's not free.  Search is paid for by advertising. 

The problem you point out is an important issue in using search results.  I wonder if most people will remember a time, not long ago, when someone would mention the number of results of a search as a serious quantity.  Then, perhaps, they noticed that almost any simple query returned hundreds of thousands of results.  If one looked at it, one would find that the results after the first couple of pages were not relevant. 

Another point in your article is very important.  You need to make sure that the vendor is legitimate.  You really need to go at least one step further.  You need to test the items.  I have seen situations where manufacturers got items from their normal reseller, but from a different supplier, and the items turned out to have problems.  They ended up either loosing the manufacturer lots of money, or putting them out of business.  A reputable manufacturer is really a must.

Ann R. Thryft
User Rank
Blogger
Re: dumbing down search
Ann R. Thryft   10/23/2012 12:31:17 PM
NO RATINGS
"Free" (to the user) directories like Global Spec are notorious for including all kinds of products one is not looking for, even when an "advanced" search engine is provided. I've encountered this there and elsewhere, including trade show directories, when looking for companies I write about, or might write about. Sometimes the problem is in the design of the category choices vendors must select, sometimes it's because the vendors check off too many boxes in those categories. Overall, I think it's because the directory is not paying people to QC the data.

GregLyon
User Rank
Iron
Re: dumbing down search
GregLyon   10/26/2012 11:09:29 AM
NO RATINGS
Naperlou, thank you for your comments. The issue of screening new suppliers has certainly become more complex and risky than ever before, with new manufacturers from around the world claiming quality products are reduced costs. As you say, no one wants to, or has the time to wade through hundreds of thousands of (maybe) qualified suppliers.  In our work, we came across many from China with incredibly low prices, but no US sales representation, no ISO, and no warrantee. Certainly not of interest for a serious user. Once you have this list of potential suppliers, as you said, they need to be tested, as catalog specs can be marketing/copied and/or theoretical numbers.   The testing then needs to weed out the non-performers, but can be time and cost intensive, and sometimes awfully hard to justify.  A conundrum!

 

There is a new company, Industrial Product Reports, which provides a Consumer Reports type service for industrial products (www.industrialproductreports.com). Thoughts?



Partner Zone
Latest Analysis
Get a load of these strange product designs. What's in the water these design engineers are drinking?
The Dutch are known for their love of bicycling, and they’ve also long been early adopters of green-energy and smart-city technologies. So it seems fitting that a town in which painter Vincent van Gogh once lived has given him a very Dutch-like tribute -- a bike path lit by a special smart paint in the style of the artist's “Starry Night” painting.
Cal Poly students use 3D printing to take flight -- and pass their class.
Celebrity engineer Grant Imahara will host a series of “webisodes” that will examine new technology and innovation from an engineer’s point of view.
The UX Italia video contest recognizes Italian machinery, technology, and other experience solutions that have contributed meaningful improvements to people’s lives and production processes. If you submit a three-minute video showcasing how the quality of Italian machinery's User eXperience is essential to your company's success, you just may win a trip to Italy.
More:Blogs|News
Design News Webinar Series
11/19/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
11/6/2014 11:00 a.m. California / 2:00 p.m. New York
10/7/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
12/11/2014 8:00 a.m. California / 11:00 a.m. New York
Quick Poll
The Continuing Education Center offers engineers an entirely new way to get the education they need to formulate next-generation solutions.
Dec 1 - 5, An Introduction to Embedded Software Architecture and Design
SEMESTERS: 1  |  2  |  3  |  4  |  5  |  6


Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.
Last Archived Class
Sponsored by Littelfuse
Learn More   |   Login   |   Archived Classes
Twitter Feed
Design News Twitter Feed
Like Us on Facebook

Sponsored Content

Technology Marketplace

Copyright © 2014 UBM Canon, A UBM company, All rights reserved. Privacy Policy | Terms of Service