Google Adds Blog Search

NEW YORK Google has released a search engine for finding blogs, attempting to bring its dominance in Web search to the growing world of consumer media.

The Google blog search engine, still in beta, allows users to find blogs in the same way they use the Google search engine. Results are ranked by relevance, with an option to re-order them by date. Google’s blog index stretches back to March 1, 2005.

Google will compete with specialty blog search engines like Technorati, Feedster and Ice Rocket.

Easy-to-use blog tools, like Google’s Blogger, have led to an explosion of user-created blogs. According to Intelliseek, 20,000 blogs are created every day.

As a test product, Google’s blog search engine does not carry advertising.

Separately, Google added a link to its personalized home page from the Google.com site. The company began testing the personalization option in May, but it was only available in the Google Labs section. A link on the Google home page can be a powerful traffic driver. When Google added a link to its Picasa photo-sharing service in July 2004, traffic to Picasa shot up 6,000 percent, according to Web measurement firm Hitwise.

Like customizable pages offered by Yahoo and other portals, the Google page lets users add Web feeds, preview Gmail e-mail, and get weather updates, driving directions and other information.

The personalized home page, which is also a beta product, does not have advertising.