Web Search Engines: Algorithms and User Interfaces

Bay-Wei Chang and Krishna Bharat, Google
bay@google.com krishna@google.com

Seminar on People, Computers, and Design
Stanford University April 18, 2003

Search engines are one of the most familiar sights on the World Wide Web. As the web keeps getting larger and more unmanageable, search engines and directories become more valuable in helping people get where they want to go. Text retrieval systems, once the domain of librarians, have now moved onto the desktop, and are starting to be used on PDAs and cell phones as well.

This talk is an introduction to the user interface issues associated with search on the web. We first introduce the architecture and algorithms of modern search engines. With this background, we will discuss prior work in user interface design for search engine front-ends and client-side search tools and opportunities for interface innovation. We will discuss the differences between web search and traditional information retrieval in terms of audience, scope, and technologies.

Krishna Bharat is a Senior Research Scientist at Google Inc. He was previously at DEC/Compaq Systems Research Center, where he worked on interfaces and algorithms for web information retrieval. He received his Ph.D. from the GVU Center, Georgia Tech in 1996, where he worked on algorithm and infrastructure support for building distributed GUI applications.

Bay-Wei Chang is a Senior Research Scientist at Google Inc. He was previously at Xerox PARC, where his research revolved around user interface issues in web editing, portable document readers, and hypertext annotations. He received his Ph.D. from Stanford University, where he worked on object-oriented languages, programming environments, and cartoon-inspired animation in user interfaces.

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