Over the last couple of weeks I’ve been working on a fun/interesting project with a student of mine (Adish … will link to his homepage here, once I find out if he has one). A new kind of people search engine for scientists. Feel free to play with it:

http://scifi.epfl.ch  – The ultimate “scientist finder”

Not-too-devastating feedback is very welcome. Keep in mind that we only started working on this 5 weeks ago and that it’s constantly undergoing improvements. See the “about” page for more details.

Though I don’t expect thousands of users at the moment in any case, be a bit selective when it comes to sharing this link with friends: it’s not very polished yet and we also se the same machine and the same interface for testing (… so you might get some funny debug information once in a while …). Still, feedback has already helped us to improve certain things and we’re looking forward to get more.

We’re especially interested in cases where our ingenious and superb technology fails completely although

  1. the person a “unique” first name + last name combination
    [with a unique transliteration in the case of names from
    non-Latin alphabets]
  2. the person has a “findable” (via the obvious web search query) scientific homepage (not just a private one or a useless blog)    and [ideally]
  3. the person as published at least 1-2 articles in “decent” international scientific conferences/journals

Currently, it’s optimized for “natural scientists” and probably won’t work well for people
in the humanities (… as they often have a different kind of characteristics in terms
of web presence).