Stop writing your search queries, drawing is much more fun

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The Independent Tech

Yahoo! is pushing the definitions of search with a new iPhone application they call "Sketch-a-Search."

The Sketch-a-Search might not be the Pictionary-like search engine we were all hoping for, but it is a good step in the right direction.

The application lets mobile users search for restaurants in the US by highlighting a neighborhood with their finger using the device's touchscreen.

"Yahoo! Sketch-a-Search makes search even easier, without typing keywords or thinking about search terms. You simply draw a boundary on your phone's map to discover local businesses within that location. Yahoo! Sketch-a-Search delivers robust local content without people needing to know the neighborhood," explained Yahoo! in a March 23 press release.

Once you have narrowed down a location you can use a gesture controls to bring up a bird's eye view of the area, or switch to a street view. The application is only available in the US for the moment and is limited to finding restaurants in the specified area but Yahoo! is working on adding additional business categories to the application in the future.

Yahoo! also released a standard search application for the iPhone on Tuesday, March 23 that offers Integrated Voice Search, location-aware technology, intelligent search history, rich local content like business phone numbers and customer ratings, and the ability to filter your search results.

The evolution of mobile technology is resulting in a new wave of inventive mobile-based search features. Google has been a forerunner in the mobile search arena, and has been working hard to push the boundaries of mobile search. Recently released mobile search features on Google's Android operating system include search by voice, automatic location-based results, local shopping searches and assisted text-based search queries.

Both applications can be downloaded from the Apple iTunes App Store for free.

http://itunes.com/apps/yahoosketchasearch
http://itunes.com/apps/yahoosearch

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