Surf Canyon Launches Discovery Engine for Search

February 19th, 2008 · 16 Comments

Surf Canyon’s browser extension significantly accelerates the search process, enables searchers to find relevant information buried among results

OAKLAND, CALIF. February 19, 2008 – Surf Canyon today announced the official release of its Discovery Engine for Search™ at The browser extension for Internet Explorer and Firefox, designed to disambiguate user queries in real time, significantly accelerates the search process.

As the volume of content on the internet expands exponentially, so has the challenge of sifting through mountains of search results in order to pinpoint the most relevant. By using Surf Canyon’s semantic real-time implicit personalization technology while searching on Google, Yahoo! or MSN, searchers are able to more quickly and easily find relevant information buried within the usually overwhelming quantity of results. Rather than leaving users to manually filter through static sets of links, this innovative application uses real-time behavior signals to calculate “instantaneous relevancies” within a result set in order to dynamically pull forward the most pertinent results while pushing back those less germane. The technology is similarly suited for targeting sponsored links, benefiting both users and advertisers.

“Like many innovations, the concept was born out of frustration,” said Mark Cramer, Surf Canyon CEO. “While existing search technology is certainly more than adequate for many needs, when looking for something relatively obscure I often felt somewhat alone digging through all the results and, as such, decided that I could benefit from a search technology that would work with me during the process. With our product, search is no longer a static lecture being pushed to the user, but a participatory conversation that yields better and faster results.”

“Surf Canyon significantly improves my search experience and the deeper results it delivers are spot on virtually every time,” said Carla Thompson, senior analyst with The Guidewire Group. “I also really like that it functions within my existing search; once installed, I’m able to enjoy the advantages without having to adjust my habits.”

About Surf Canyon
Surf Canyon develops real-time implicit personalization technology for internet search. Its patents-pending Discovery Engine for Search™ transforms static result pages into dynamic knowledge resources, enabling users to more quickly and easily find pertinent information buried among all the irrelevant results, significantly accelerating the search process.
Surf Canyon has headquarters in Oakland, California and is recognized by as an “Innovator to Watch.”

Tags: Announcements · Discovery · Media · Press Releases · Testimonials

  • gina

    this is GENIUS! prioritizes my search results and saves so much time – a “must have” for all smart surfers

  • sam

    I’ve used surfcanyon now for many months, and it’s so useful, it’s become part of my regular search routine – I couldn’t imagine using Google without it.

  • wmkargo

    this website has improved my life – literally. I do not spend an indeterminable amount of time searching for sites that are hidden on pages that I would never find if not for surfcanyon. Go surfcanyon – love it!

  • W. Gabriel

    Just want to let you know that Surf Canyon rocks! Thank you so much for creating it. After weeks of using it at work, I found myself extremely disappointed to fire up my home computer and not have Surf Canyon ready to streamline my searching. I’ve since downloaded it to every computer I work on and am sharing it with all of my colleagues. Surf Canyon has vastly improved my efficiency at work and helped me to locate difficult to find information. I’m now easily finding all the needles in the haystacks. Thank you again for making it available!

  • Steven B.

    I’m in sales and the Surfcanyon widget has saved me countless clicks and page refreshes. It let’s me really see what’s out there as I research topics and customer information.

    If you are in sales and you need become a power search expert overnight, Surfcanyon is the tool.

  • Andy M.

    An excellent addition to any search engine, and a must for any serious internet user.

  • Sandy Sanderson

    I have been working on a research project this weekend defining the video advertising market and it’s competitive aspects. I have been using Google as a primary search tool. In the past the ‘Google-search’ process required an extensive use of manual adjustments of the search terms to narrow down the relevant information amount the millions of returns. Even with the Google Advanced Search functions I am quite sure there are specific sources that I can not identify or sort out of the large returns from the searches. My suspicions seem to be validated. I use SurfCanyon for all my searches with some interesting results. I found that I did not need to do every increasing advance searches to find relevant information. The SurfCanyon returns were always on the mark for the primary finding as well as bringing up topics that were across a range of pages that I may have not gotten to. I believe SurfCanyon reduced my search time by many hours and increased the quantity and quality of the information I found. SurfCanyon has truly made the Internet searchable again.

  • Ralph

    I was doing some research on a new project when I ran into a typical problem. The key search words were too common to be helpful in getting to what I really wanted.

    The one article that was somewhat close that appeared in the first two pages, ended up giving Surfcanyon all it needed to find another 8 relevant hits. Then the ball was rolling.


  • Habib

    It’s a really good extension for Firefox, but it interferes with the extension “Customize Google”. All additional options that Customize Google would show on a second page won’t be shown with SurfCanyon. Perhaps you could fix that behavior.

    Editor’s Note: Only some of the CustomizeGoogle features are “incompatible,” but we’re working on a solution. Unfortunately, it is not straightforward, so in the meantime we might suggest disabling those particular features of CustomizeGoogle or, perhaps, accepting the result the way it is. We regret any inconvenience.

  • Deepak

    It does not work if I used the link to open in another Tab. :(

    Editor’s Note: Recommendations are generated by either clicking on a result or clicking the bull’s eye associated with a result. Using the right-click menu to open a search result in either a new window or new tab will not produce recommendations. We consider this to be a feature and regret any inconvenience.

  • Aloha From Hawaii

    LOVE IT!

    Mahalo :)!

  • JMc

    Excellent extension – very useful, well integrated.

    However, it doesn’t work in combination with Web Of Truth or McAfee SiteAdvisor extensions. Any results brought forward by SurfCanyon has the bulls-eye covering the icons from these two extensions, and I’m not all that keen on sacrificing that extra security for convenient searching. Any chance these can be resolved? Cheers.

    [Editor’s note: We’re working on it! In the meantime, you can operate Surf Canyon with the bull’s eyes turned off. (Look under Tools–>Surf Canyon Options.) You obviously will no longer be able to click them, but you’ll still get recommendations when you click a result and then return to the search page. Update (12/18/08) – This was resolved in v2.0.0 released a couple weeks ago.]

  • Vijay Krishna Ramesh

    Love the extension, it has helped me figure out what I want to know both for work and school on innumerable occasions.

    One feature request though – I don’t like how it ajaxifies Google’s results so that selecting page 2 extends page 1 instead of displaying in a new page. I somewhat get why it does this (the idea being instead of having linear search results, you use the top results plus the Search Canyon bullseyes to delve “horizontally” into the topic) but sometimes none of the top 10 results are quite what I wanted, and I’d prefer to view page 2 alone than added on to page 1. Maybe make an option to extend search results vs load on new page?

    Otherwise keep up the good work!

    [Editor’s Note: Excellent request! The current functionality was more an artifact of technical rather than design considerations, but we’re exploring possible ways around it. Having all of the results on one page does have some advantages, such as being able to scan everything that you’ve seen so far, either visually or with a ctrl-f. Thank you for your feedback!]

  • Vijay Krishna Ramesh

    Oh, also (just noticed this) Google has a “promote/remove” feature for logged in users (never noticed this before, but i guess it uses that data to tailor search results in the future) – however, when using Search Canyon, if I click on page 2 and it loads the page inline, the “promote/remove” buttons are not accessible for the later pages.
    One other thing (and here I’m getting a bit nitpicky, but I really dig this plugin and want to get the most out of it) – when clicking on a page other than 2, it loads all the intermediate pages inline as well (eg, clicking page 7 loads pages 2-7). I understand why this is the default behavior, but couldn’t there be an option to not load inline to avoid this?

    [Editor’s Note: The “promote/remove” is Google’s SearchWiki that was launched a few weeks ago. We are exploring how to add this functionality to our recommendations and subsequent pages of results. Having all of the subsequent pages inline was a product of technical considerations, but we’re exploring ways around that as well. Once again, thank you for your feedback!]

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