Why does Boolify look a little different?
In September and October, 2011, Google deprecated support for their open-access Search API to move to a paid-only model. Public Learning Media is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit. We do not have the resources to purchase Google Search API access for Boolify. To keep the site online, we have switched to Microsoft Bing's open API to serve our results. We believe Bing fills the need and, with user feedback, are hopeful that it will improve over time.
The switch will result in slightly different results sets, and some users report unanticipated changes, such as those noted below.
Issue 1: Numbers of Results
9/15/2011: It was brought to our attention that Bing returns strange-seeming numbers for some OR and NOT operations. Specifically, limiting searches using OR or NOT may actually produce MORE results, rather than FEWER.
After checking into the issue, we have identified and replicated it.
Research reveals that all search engines use a variety of tactics to estimate the number of results, including Google and Bing. That means that refining your keywords may simultaneously provide more accurate results, but more of them. So, search results are not flawed - but the numbers may be.
Status: As far as we can ascertain, the results are correct. However, to eliminate any confusion, we have removed numbers of results.
Issue 2: Undesirable Results
9/26/2011: It was brought to our attention that some results were inappropriate for children. As our note on the About page explains (and the related blog conversation elaborates), we enforce use of the strongest filters available through Bing to ensure the results are as safe as possible. We do not have - never did - the ability to filter beyond that, or exclude specific sites.
No results set on any search engine is 100% safe, and it's impossible to know which keyword combinations will yield undesirable results, as many explicit content purveyors are attempting to get around filters by re-labeling their content or using slang or alternate terms.
We have taken the issue up, and will let you know what we learn.
Status: Seeking input from Microsoft/Bing about possible ways to ensure we're defaulting to the strictest filters possible.
How to report something weird
If you see something weird that's not reflected here, please say something! Report the bug through our bug reporting system and we'll do our best to get right on it.