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Search with Kartoo, a Visual Meta Search Engine


Kartoo, A Visual Meta Search Engine

Kartoo, A Visual Meta Search Engine

Note: As of December 2011, Kartoo is no longer in service. Try The Ultimate Search Engine List for a search engine that might meet your needs.

What is Kartoo?

Kartoo is a visual meta search engine, "with visual display interfaces. When you do a search and click on OK, Kartoo launches the query to a set of search engines, gathers the results, compiles them and represents them in a series of interactive maps through a proprietary algorithm."

More simply put, Kartoo puts its results on an interactive, visual map for you to play with. Kartoo is a metacrawler/metasearch engine, which means that it does not come up with its own results, but aggregates the results of many other search engines.

How does Kartoo work?

Here's how it works (you'll need a Flash Player in order to run this site the way it was designed to look, but there is also an HTML version available):
  • Type your query in the Kartoo search box.
  • Select your language from the flags beneath the search box.
  • Your search results are compiled. You will see a screen with three columns: the first column contains all the topics Kartoo found that have anything to do with your search query. My search query was "silver charms", and so my topics ran the gamut from "wholesale sterling silver jewelry" to "antique silver charms." The second column contains the actual map generated by your search results; as you mouse over, the links between the various map locations will light up, showing their relationship to each other.

    Also, when you hover over one particular site, the information for that site will show up in the far left column. Lastly, the third column gives you the option to print, send, or save the search results map, with the additional options of adding a site or adding a topic.

  • If you click on any of your search results, they will open in a new window.

Kartoo Special Features

You can install Kartoo on your site in order to have search capability; as well as the KarToolbar, a browser toolbar that has some cool features, including transparent overlay results.

Kartoo Search Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Lots of cool visual tricks - it's fun to use

Kartoo Search Cons

  • Loads slowly on older computers or those with lower-speed connections
  • Results not as relevant as I would have hoped

Overall Impression of Kartoo

I surf on over to Kartoo whenever I need a bit of distraction from "regular" search engines. It's a fun site to play around with, and while the results aren't as relevant as they should be, I still find it a useful resource; if for nothing else the cool visual search results interface.

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