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Build The World’s Alternative Search Engine With Us

josh

07 November 2022

6 min

The Mojeek Evaluation tool home page, including a description of how to use the tool and an unfilled search box

Our newly-released evaluation tool brings you in as a willing participant in making Mojeek’s ranking algorithm better.

At Mojeek we frequently improve based on what people report to us. We spot problems which come from your freely-given feedback (there’s a feedback button on the results page) and then attempt to chart a course forward that solves them.

Once a fix is found we also need to test out this iteration. Our small dynamic team at Mojeek can do a lot of querying in order to find out what gets better and what gets worse, but we can only do so much. Sometimes you need larger-scale testing in order to prove an idea. With such a quantity of searches on any given day being completely new (15% on Google in 2022) we need a wide array of different individuals to be involved in testing to ensure we’re building something which works for the wide variety of people using Mojeek to search the web.

As a company which is building a true alternative, we wanted to come up with something new. We wanted to find a way that those who wanted to contribute could assist us, without this taking away from their search experience.

This is why we’re inviting you here to use a brand new tool, and by doing so, play a vital part in Mojeek’s development.

Mojeek Eval

Previously we tested algorithmic updates with those enthusiastic about Mojeek by getting them to look at a much larger change; anyone who used the ac=test parameter that we offered up in the community is familiar with this process. A decision was made off the back of this that a more regular and dynamic approach would be preferable. This is now made possible through a page which compares the current live algorithm with an amended one, and asks testers to vote for which they think is better for any given query.

Enter: The Mojeek Algorithm Evaluation Page

Now there is another input into evaluating these changes, one which is completely human, but results from people choosing to come and try out the algorithm. Instead of treating people like rats in a laboratory, we’ve decided to invite you into the experiment as active participants. The evaluation page will look not too different from Mojeek itself at first, with a query box and an added explainer:

Thank you for helping to evaluate changes to the Mojeek ranking algorithm. These changes can sometimes be minor, or only affect certain types of query. If you see no difference or very little between the results, please still vote as they are important to help determine the overall impact of any change.

This is an important thing to note if you're looking to try it out. Many of these tweaks will be small, and that quite frequently you will see the same set of results across the two options. Let’s go through this now.

The Mojeek Evaluation tool home page, including a description of how to use the tool and an unfilled search box

Here we can see two sets of results side by side; all you need to do to play your part in this testing is to look at what is presented to you, follow links to get a better idea of what you're seeing, and vote on which of these responses fits best with your assessment of the results:

A' much better - 'A' better - Even - 'B' better - 'B' much better

Once you’ve voted, please feel free to input another query, and another, and another… for us there isn’t such a thing as too much feedback! On top of this, if you have any other people you think would relish the opportunity to join us in the process of building the world’s alternative search engine then send them this article or the tool. It’s not often that you get the choice to participate in building the future; here and now, you can.

josh

07 November 2022

6 min

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