One of the things I am most focused on with the new, which is coming soon, is a better search experience.

I have been impressed by how much we were able to improve the search on the new and the way we did that was by using a site search service called Algolia. So I am going to use Algolia here at AVC as well.

Algolia allows me to customize the search results to improve them. That means I can work on improving the search results here at AVC over time.

There are 8,470 posts here at AVC as of today. That’s a ton of content. And finding the post you remember reading and want to read again, or send to someone, has never been easy.

I hope and expect to fix that soon.


Comments (Archived):

  1. obarthelemy

    It’s a bit disheartening to realize that most of the time, we’re better off searching for stuff on a specific site via google + site url. IIRC there’s a specific Google parameter (must be: to do that, but you don’t need it, just add the site url to the search query. I’d say about half the sites are more searchable from outside than form within.And the worst offender is Amazon, where a search for “4TB 3.5″ HDD” will return results that are not 4TB, not 3.5″ and/or not HDD.

    1. sigmaalgebra

      Been there, seen that! But at the Amazon site, for me, including looking for 2 TB, 3.5″, SATA, HDD, the Amazon one line text box for search works great! I’ll go to 4+ TB soon! Windows XP can’t use 4 TB, and I still have a bootable partition with XP for running some old Nero software for DVD copying, software that won’t run on Windows 7!Heck I recently got a new watch, a grand bargain, Casio. It has a great looking watch band, but I want a traditional Speidel that will let me slide the watch half way up my forearm and, thus, out of the way when I’m, say, installing a 3.5″ SATA HDD, using a circle saw, adding oil to my old car, washing dishes, applying epoxy to any of many little repair tasks I encounter, making a pizza (I’ve got that down, solid, faster and better than frozen, delivery, or carryout and for about 36 cents per pizza), making an omelet or a BBQ sandwich (canned chicken breast chunks from Sam’s with Cattlemen’s, from Amazon, BBQ sauce and coleslaw from shredded green cabbage and ranch dressing), etc.So, for a new watch band, I need the little tool with the thin blade with a V notch cut in the end for removing the old watch band! Yesterday I found that Amazon has a page awash in tools, supplies for working with watch bands! I took good notes and will put in an order soon!IIRC, Bezos was a computer science major! Amazon has some good programmers; I haven’t seen any direct evidence of them doing anything very advanced, but they do a good job on an ocean of relatively routine work, a much better job than the average on the Web.

      1. obarthelemy

        For me Amazon search kinda of works, but will pepper results with wrong stuff. What’s worse, their very rudimentary filtering is also wrong at times. On a good IT site, finding those HDDs takes 6-7 clicks, but then you’re DONE. On Amazon, it takes a search, then you get dupes, wrong product, marketplace stuff…

        1. sigmaalgebra

          Looks like I was duped! Or, if she is absolutely over the top drop dead gorgeous, I might not notice that her below the shoulders world class natural blond hair could be a foot longer down to her waist! Or, if I find a 2-4 TB 3.5″ 7200 RPM SATA drive for ~$100, beyond belief, I might not notice some of the ads, wrong stuff, or extra clicks!

  2. William Mougayar

    It would be good to understand the process for adding Algolia to a website. How is it done, in a nutshell? And what are the costs roughly?

    1. TRoberts

      It looks like non-commercial (like AVC) should be free, but commercial scale deployments starts at ~$500/mo and go up from there.

  3. Emily Steed

    Yay! Fantastic. I especially keep going back to the posts about effective decks.

  4. awaldstein

    Thanks–i’m gonna check this out as search on my blogs really sucks.

  5. sigmaalgebra

    Yup, quite broadly there’s a LOT of content on the Internet and, thus, for a lot of it, particular to each user, a huge problem in finding that content.

    1. jason wright

      Same as it ever was. The web is its own problem.

  6. Eric D. Brown

    I’ve been using Algolia for about 2 years now and absolutely love it. If you’re a developer, you can customize results and search criteria and the service is lightning fast. Algolia is one of my rare ‘very highly recommenced’ services.

  7. Matt A. Myers

    When I think through how the internet should function, the fluidity that should exist, it reminds me more and more how the VC industrial complex and the scarcity, control that their investments require to maintain the excesses of the rent seeking-like behaviour of their portfolio companies – is the wrong structure for supporting the full beneficial systems and interactivity of these systems of the internet. Bitcoin et al was an obvious solution under the natural lens that forms for the VC industry, yet similarly lacks understanding or designing for the full breadth of how the internet can behave with fluidity – under a mindset of abundance vs. scarcity. The narrative perpetuated by the VC-financial industrial complex, that they try their best to indoctrinate entrepreneurs into as the best source of capital, will ultimately fail.The upcoming AVC redesign along with integration with Algolia reminds me of how I envisioned AVC’s community evolving with the evolution of tools I brainstormed many years ago – improvements for Disqus, for the blog, for search, for community management. Many years passing and the internet is still nowhere near facilitating how community can and should be supported on the internet – and it’s obvious upon analysis that the mechanisms of the VC industrial complex leads to such decay, demise, and not designing for the important nuances. It’s an interesting thought tying the design of internet companies, the tools and value they provide, to the indoctrination, structure, that VC funds lead most companies to evolving for; “Ideologues don’t care about nuance.”I am reminded too of The Independent Web posted by Fred 8 years ago – and the blog post I made related to it – https://mattamyers.tumblr.c… – and still how no one is designing an ecosystem to solve for the problems I outlined; I do feel USV’s investment into Bitcoin et al infrastructure was misguided and stemmed from looking for a solution to The Independent Web idea that was circulating I believe before USV had made any blockchain related investments.Looking back to Fred’s original post on AVC –… – we can now see that the comments through Disqus are no longer available. Are they gone forever? Perhaps; it’s commonly said the discussion of the community was where the real value came; putting all data in a “decentralized” blockchain structure inherently designed as a Ponzi-Pyramid scheme isn’t the answer, isn’t necessary, and only increases costs unnecessarily.Has anyone backed up all of the comments on AVC that were on Disqus? Are they lost now since the sale of Disqus? If not yet, when – as Disqus has certainly not had improvements since acquisition and arguably has degraded.

    1. jason wright

      The web is the sum of the imperatives of the industries that built it and own it.I have not backed up my Disqus comments.I will not blog until i have total control over the content i generate. I will not allow a third party corp to have control over the content i and others create there. Fuck ’em.

      1. Matt A. Myers

        By “control over the content” do you mean companies who in their TOS claim the legal right, ownership/use of said content?

        1. jason wright

          Yes, but more than that. The Disqus comments point you raise, et.c. The whole thing.

    2. Alex Rinaldi

      Whether or not crypto is the answer to Fred’s decentralized web is certainly up for debate.But to say Bitcoin is a Ponzi is incorrect and easily falsifiable.When you spend money on bitcoin / buy or mine a new one, value does not directly flow back to one entity, or directly to the people at the top of the “pyramid.” The fact that $ price goes up as demand goes up, does not make it a Ponzi.New coins are consistently created in a verifiable open source way that is not controlled by one entity, and cannot be altered by a person or entity. The monetary policy has not changed since inception.For example, Satoshi’s BTC stack has not changed since he’s left the project. Surely, the person at the top of a pyramid increases their holdings over time, especially as they do nothing additional to “earn” more value, no?Transactions on the network and wallet balances can audited by anyone at any time–Ponzi schemes hide both of these features.The fact that the $ value of bitcoin rises over time, as more participants join the network, does not make it a Ponzi. It means the value of the network is increasing as it is able to handle more $ value over the network.Bitcoin is not any more of a Ponzi than any other form of money. There is no specific unique characteristic of Bitcoin that makes it more Ponzi-like than any other form of money.Bitcoin is simply a Schelling point — just like any other form of money. You treat is as money because other people treat it as money.…The basic event path for Bitcoin works like this: when asset allocators decide it has a shot at being a safe asset, they buy a little. This has three effects: it raises the price, obviously; it lowers volatility, because asset allocators rebalance their holdings, which means they trade against the market; and it makes it more likely that Bitcoin will be a safe asset.It’s Schelling Points all over again. If every major asset allocator decides that 0.1% is the ideal weighting for Bitcoin, the ideal weighting is necessarily higher than 0.1%, so they ratchet up, and continue to until they reach equilibrium. As Bitcoin’s odds of acceptance as a reserve asset grow, its volatility declines.

      1. Matt A. Myers

        It’s a decentralized Ponzi-Pyramid scheme – the outcome is the same. Yes, it’s true there isn’t a single entity say like Madoff orchestrating it all, that doesn’t mean it isn’t as bad and leads to unnecessary, unreasonable value extraction – especially so as society is manipulated into adopting it, whether through regulatory capture or other.

  8. jason wright

    Great expectations…and no intention to insult anyone, you or the community, but an attempt to shift the balance from talkshop to workshop to shopshop would be my great expectation going forward.

  9. sigmaalgebra

    That the MSM (mainstream media, ABC, AP, …, NYT, WaPo, etc.), far too many of which are totally devoted to a NYC centered echo chamber of gang-up, pile-on, anti-Trump, fake-news, e.g.,…are obsessively determined to destroy their business something like lemmings rushing to the sea, there has to be a good opportunity for other news sources.Maybe as big as Amazon? How? In a sense, with as much variety and quality as Amazon.I mean, in simple terms, as it is, so far there is essentially no news. Instead there is (i) smelly bait for a fish hook for ad revenue and (ii) propaganda for special interests. If Amazon were like that, they’d be selling only various varieties of snake oil, miracle diets, magic amulets, opiods, etc.For anyone who got as far as middle school, the MSM is just sick-o. No exaggeration intended: It’s worse than useless.News is an important service and should be an important industry. With the MSM, we no longer have such a service or industry.With the Internet, get to set aside huge rolls of paper and big barrels of ink, etc.And better than Amazon, get to draw the information in, check the quality, organize it, and flow it out at just dirt cheap shipping costs.That’s not very close to my startup, but it’s darned important. We can’t expect anyone in the MSM to do it.For the MSM now, the video here is a bombshell, the beginning of the end, the walls closing in, the tipping point, with the heads of all the MSM resigning?How could the MSM get any worse? Where is their audience? Who watches that stuff, only bored dogs and cats in pet shelters? Anyone else?

  10. Matt Zagaja

    This is the content I am here for. Definitely going to look at it for my own blog that I have not been writing in lately.

  11. Blane Cordes

    Just started using Algolia recently and feels like a layer of abstraction on top of elasticsearch (but its not see:…. So what heroku is for AWS algolia is for elasticsearch. Allows small dev teams to get alot more done faster but can become expensive I would guess as you scale

    1. Marwan Burelle

      Hello, I’m a software engineer from Algolia.The underlying tech is purely built in house, it’s not elastic.Our CTO wrote about our engine some years ago:

      1. Blane Cordes

        ah wow thanks! very helpful and interesting