geognos 300x235 The flag of what North African Arab nation is solid green?Geognos (loose translation knowledge of geography) is not a search engine in the conventional sense of crawling the world wide web, but rather it is a pre-organized database of country specific information (from Afghanistan to Zimbabwe) that you can browse by first clicking on the flag of the country that you want to learn about.

But this is not a post about the quantity or quality of the information that Geognos provides. You can decide that for yourself by clicking on your country’s flag, and I encourage you to do so. No, the point that I want to make here is that the presentation of the database to be searched can be improved just as much as the content of the resulting searches.

In this case, Geognos has missed a valuable opportunity to take a routine flag search engine and turn it into something special. Now here’s what I would do:

2010 02 01 1858 300x282 The flag of what North African Arab nation is solid green?
This “disco ball” display is from one of my all-time favorite search engines TagGalaxy. You can’t tell from this static image, but on the site you can spin this globe around and around any way that you want. (To get to this point you first have to explore the Galaxy, but that’s another post.)

So this is what I suggest that the developers of Geognos try for their next release: Arrange their flag symbols in this same earth shape, with the country flags placed as close as possible to their actual location. That way the images to be searched match the type of search being performed. When this happens, the user experiences a more satisfying initial experience, which then draws them in to trying out the site.

Once they click on a flag and begin to drill down into the factual data, then the ultimate accuracy and utility of the data, or search results, will determine whether the user will become a repeat visitor.

subzin 300x54 The flag of what North African Arab nation is solid green?Now, the flag of what north african arab nation is solid green?

00:44:25 The flag of what North African arab nation is solid green?
00:44:28 – Libya. – Yes.
00:44:31 Damn, this guy knows everything.

From the movie “My First Mister.”

Quote courtesy of Subzin, the movie quotes search engine.