According to its creator Jon Goldhill, Zanran is "Google for data".
WHAT IT'S BEST FOR
- Zanran is a search engine designed to find data and statistics, and is great for helping you to find ‘semi-structured’ data on the web. This is the numerical data that people have presented as graphs and tables and charts. For example, the data could be a graph in a PDF report, or a table in an Excel spreadsheet, or a barchart shown as an image in an HTML page. This huge amount of information can be difficult to find using conventional search engines, which are focused primarily on finding text rather than graphs, tables and bar charts.
- Zanran’s advanced search options include the ability to search a specific site, for specific file types, over certain time periods (last 6 months, last 12 months, etc.) and for data from specific countries.
- Unlike a normal search engine, the search results – graphs, tables, etc. - can be previewed by mouse-hovering over the thumbnails.
WHERE IT FALLS DOWN
- Zanran is still in the Beta phase, which means it will sometimes draw up images that don’t contain data.
- “As a general rule,” founder Jon Goldhill says, “results are good when the data is likely to be found in graphs and tables rather than in free text, is the subject of a full analysis [and] serves information professionals (analysts, consultants, librarians, etc.).”
* Costs are correct at time of publication. Please always refer to original website for current pricing.