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Monday, July 9, 2018

Create Your Own Search Engine

Last week I saw some folks on Twitter sharing a link to a site called Kidy that advertised itself as an "intellegent, safe search engine for kids." I checked out the site and found that it was just an implementation of a Google Custom Search Engine that anyone can create. The implementation on Kidy was also lacking in the amount of sources it indexed. I tried five varied searches and in each case all of the results appeared to come from a small selection of sources like PBS, National Geographic, Encyclopedia Britannica (no better than using Wikipedia), NASA, and History.com. Anyone could replicate that search engine and or improve upon it by using Google's Custom Search Engine tool.

Take a look at my video and slides below to learn how you can create your own custom search engine.


Slides of the process are embedded below.


Applications for Education
Creating your own search engine can be a good way to help students limit the scope of their searches. For example, when you're teaching younger students about search strategies you might want to have them use a search engine that only indexes a few dozen websites so that you can have some assurance that they won't be landing on pages of questionable content.