Picked Fresh Daily

One of the key elements of having a great index is having fresh content.  If someone searches for Vista on the day that we announced the name for the next version of Windows then they should be able to see relevant results.  This means that we need to have the content in our index within minutes of these types of events happening. In order to do this we built a simple crawler to get News and Blogs that break this type of news. As you may...
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Extending Your MSN Search Toolbar

Hello Everyone! After a lot of hard work from the people here and our partners you can now see local Weather reports in the MSN Search Toolbar. Just download our brand-new Weather Add-in and you’ll be able to view a three day forecast at a glance with one click.  It’s the first of many toolbar add-ins that will help you customize your toolbar experience. You can also download the first partner services to utilize the public...
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Get Local Search with Maps and Directions on your phone!

The MSN Search and MSN Mobile teams have recently collaborated and are excited to deliver the MSN Local Search Beta to your mobile device! Currently available in the US, Mobile Search is available on Windows Mobile devices, as well as new phones with WAP 2.0 browsers.  To try out the service, launch your phone’s web browser, and go to http://mobile.msn.com/ and select “Beta Services” from the main menu. So what does it do...
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How's my stock doing?

When you get asked the same question a half million times a day, you better have a good answer! I’m happy to announce that MSN Search has partnered with the MSN Money team to add a stock quote instant answer for stock related searches. You may ask, what’s a stock related search? Here’s how we decide: Ticker search– If the search term is obviously a stock ticker, for example MSFT, we’ll include the quote instant answer...
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MSN Search in Silicon Valley Tonight

What’s MSN Search doing? How are we doing it? Where are we going? As mentioned on JobsBlog and on AlwaysThinking, MSN Search is going to be in Silicon Valley tonight. Christopher Payne, VP of MSN Search, Ken Moss, GM of Web Search, and Dane Glasgow, PUM of MSN Client, will be speaking. There will also be plenty of MSN Search devs and testers on hand as well to take questions. So if you are in town for Search Engine Strategies and are curious...
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Virtual Earth is one week old – What we’ve learned

We launched Virtual Earth Beta a week ago yesterday, and the response has been overwhelming to say the least. We’ve received a ton of feedback and suggestions from users via email, reviews, and blogs (Check out Jeremy Wright’s review, Austin Pauls’ comments, Search Engine Watch, or this fun thread at /. for a sampling) Work is well underway on the next release of Virtual Earth and your feedback is super important to insure it...
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MSN Screensaver with Search & RSS

We launched a beta version of the MSN Screen Saver (you can find it at http://screensaver.msn.com) last week. It was built by a few people in our London team. There wasn’t really a business model behind this; someone had the idea to build this because it would be “cool for users” and so we let them go and build it. So what’s the big deal about a screen saver? Well, it displays personalized content (news, weather, pictures...
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Virtual Earth is Live

Wow! Virtual Earth (beta) has been released. It’s a beautiful web-site that’s packed full of features including local search, maps, and a scratchpad. I love that I can easily create a tour of seattle; here’s some spots on my personal map of capitol hill. We’re not the only one’s reporting on Virtual Earth’s release, both Search Engine Watch and Chandu Thota have more. I’ve taken the liberty of reposting...
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Tagging Feedback at MSN Search

We find customer feedback quite delicious at MSN Search.  To help the team digest the massive flow of feedback we receive, we designed a tagging and viewing system inspired by the faceted browsing system, Flamenco, developed at UC Berkeley. We’re very happy to have addressed our top feature request in the latest release – yellow page results, called out in the image below as “ypResults” with the introduction of local...
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MSN Search Toolbar rolls out more international versions

We received a couple of comments in response to the recent blog posting which announced the availability of international versions of MSN Search Toolbar with Windows Desktop Search. Specifically, we were asked “where’s the India version”, and “where’s the China version”. I’d love to say that we took those comments to heart and rushed to prepare new international versions for you, but the truth of the...
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