Hakia is a search engine that focuses on meaning rather than straight keyword popularity. The application calls itself a semantic search engine because it scours meaning rather than how often a keyword is searched and used. Search results are displayed as text links, just like other search engines however Hakia breaks them down into categories. The user can peruse categories including web, gallery, credible, pubmed, news, blogs, Twitter, images and videos. Only images and videos are presented with pictures in place of text links. The search engine lets users jump directly to a specific type or result or browse all results to see what came up. The search process works just like Google. The user enters a word or phrase and Hakia shows the results, with a status displayed above the search bar indicating whether the search is done or not.Show more screenshots »
Hakia was founded by nuclear scientist Riza Berkan and economist Pentti Kouri in 2004. The Hakia board includes former New Jersey Senator Bill Bradley. The search engine hasn’t received much attention as of late and perhaps with good reason. It feels a bit cumbersome, especially compared to the ease of familiar alternatives like Google. Another mark against Hakia is a lack of accuracy. There is something to be said about keyword popularity and how it can improve search results. With Hakia, the user must ask the right question in the right way or they may have to work through unrelated search results.
Search engines are not uncommon today, however search engines that do not focus on keyword popularity are. Hakia offers a unique way to seek content based on meaning. Users can try different ways to search for topics, people, events and anything else imaginable. The search engine has some issues, but may prove to be an interesting alternative to the traditional search engine. It may not be a practical replacement, but it is a nice supplemental tool.
Hakia utilizes a simple design and really isn’t much to look at beyond the playful silver sphere that dot’s the “i” in the site’s logo. The results are neatly organized, but in plain boxes with narrow headers that lean towards bland rather than modern and cutting edge. The site doesn’t contain much clutter, which is a nice touch, but still doesn’t give the user much to look at. The user also has to scroll pretty far down the page to access all results because of the sorting system.
Anyone can stop by the Hakia homepage and search for anything on the web. There are no registration requirements and the site does not offer an account option at this time. Users can return and search as much as they like, any time they want. The homepage contains a small box in the upper, right hand corner for users who wish to add Hakia to their browser search options. This is not required to use the basic web search.
Charging a fee for searching the internet would really knock a site like Hakia down a few pegs in the eyes of internet users. Most individuals are not willing to pay for a service that is free in so many other places. Hakia adheres to that rule and offers its unique searching services for nothing. Users do not have to subscribe or make any purchases to access the search tool. No account is needed so charging a fee would be difficult, anyway.
Hakia is an interesting search alternative for users who want to find more results, especially for a challenging query. The site works better as a supplemental searching resource because the focus on meaning isn’t as practical as a straightforward keyword search. Users can still benefit by seeing different results sorted into categories, which might uncover new research options and other resources depending on the user’s needs.