Why Y Axis?

It is not every day that a major search provider launches a completely new search presentation. In fact, I can’t think of the last time a provider did that off the top of my head. So I was intrigued to try the new search browser from Yahoo!, which is cleverly titled “Yahoo! Axis.” I first tried it on my desktop where it sits as a plug-in search box in the bottom left corner. That in itself is an interesting change and can be a bit frustrating if your browser window is below the screen.

The results presentation essentially loads a series of mini web pages rather than blue links, which is a bit of a clunky mess. Another frustration is that you have to scroll sideways multiple times to look at a dozen or so pages. It presents local results like post it notes, and again, you have to flick and scroll to the side to see more than a few results.

I then tried the iPhone version, which initially didn’t work at all. I kept getting messages to the effect that I wasn’t connected to the web even though I was. It eventually worked, and my guess is that the delay can be attributed to the time it took to download the mini versions of the sites.

Overall, the presentation is quite pretty, and it’s fun to flick through the pages, but it is not a different enough, useful enough or fast enough alternative to win me over right away.

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