Google Mordor

By Nathan Weinberg

Strange. Just a few days after I post about the Lord of the Rings fans who want a Google Doodle to honor LOTR writer J. R. R. Tolkien, we find Google Mordor, a total conversion of the Google search engine. I’m not even sure how this would work, but the creator explains that it was a fully functional clone of Google, that let you search Google Web and Image search, retrieves the results from Google and reformats them with a very different page design.

Seems like an interesting idea, that you could create a completely functional mod of the Google search engine, one that preserved all the features while giving you whatever color scheme and other changes you’d like. Of course, the site doesn’t do it anymore, saying that “version was lost”, and I’d like to know how it was pulled off in the first place, amd how I could do it myself without resorting to GreaseMonkey.
(via Digg)

May 7, 2006 by Nathan Weinberg in:

3 Responses to “Google Mordor”

  1. Terry Fernandez Says:

    so now you are into wasting bandwidth as well..hmm, slippery slope

  2. Daniel Beardsmore Says:

    How I did it? Basically I used the MacHTTP command http.get() (I think! The docs are gone as MacASP is discontinued) to pull down the standard Google search results page for Web or Images, the only two I implemented.

    Then, I ran their HTML through a series of about 25 text replacements, both standard replace and regular expression replace, to replace the inline styling (HTML 3/CSS) with new colours and to point internal URLs (images, previous/next page, image/Web switch etc) to paths on my own site.

    The page header was custom generated with my own CSS, and the results area appended after that. The image and Web search pages were static HTML, and the results pages were dynamic MacASP pages.

    This was way back in 2003 (!) and since then, Norton screwed up my drive so the ASP code is gone. I was looking forward to siggy rewriting it in PHP but that won’t happen and for me the fad has pretty much passed. It was certainly great fun at the time, and one individual (presumably a Geek Culture forums member) was using it as his or her actual search page. So everything he or she looked up, was in my server log :) I don’t recall seeing anything too dubious though!

    It’s been suggested since that I use the Google API for the remake, but that is a bit limited and I’d no longer have image search and the ability to flick from Web to Images and back within my own site, which I was dead chuffed I got to work! Who knows, maybe someone will try it again one day.

  3. Daniel Beardsmore Says:

    Sorry! http.get() is a MacASP function, not MacHTTP (the Web server). Slip of the finger.

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