The business of Search covers a wide area: web search, mobile search, video search etc - you'll find that and all the techniques, and intricacies associated with it here.

Comparing Desktop Search Solutions

Thread Title: Compare Desktop Search Tools Thread Url: Thread Description:

Thanks Jeremey Z for the pointer to this comparison table for the various DTS apps available. I haven't tried a single one, i know how to find stuff on my PC heh..

However, it's a neat link by the look of it, so enjoy. If you are using a DTS app I have a couple of questions for you:

What are you using? Why? Is it up to the job?

Will IBM's 3rd Generation Piquant Search Technology Trounce Google?

Thread Title: At I.B.M., That Google Thing Is So Yesterday Thread Url: Thread Description:

An interesting look at IBM's PIQUANT (Practical Intelligent QUestion ANswering Technology) - although this is (i think) aimed at business use it does seem that they are comparing to Google and thinking in terms of the Web also. PIQUANT uses natural language processing to add meaning to text:

One example is question answering. Google-type search engines are fabulous at retrieving random data, but mediocre at handling subtler queries. Using Google or Ask Jeeves, you can eventually find out how many of the world's Web pages are in each of the major languages, but it's slow and frustrating compared with finding out, say, Mozart's birthplace. Jennifer Chu-Carroll of I.B.M. demonstrated a system called Piquant, which analyzed the semantic structure of a passage and therefore exposed "knowledge" that wasn't explicitly there. After scanning a news article about Canadian politics, the system responded correctly to the question, "Who is Canada's prime minister?" even though those exact words didn't appear in the article.

MR. CICCOLO, the search strategist, said that in a way his team was trying to match - and reverse - what Google has achieved. "As Google use became widespread, people began asking why it was so much easier to find material on the external Web than it was on their own computers or in their company's Web sites," he said. "Google sets a very high standard for that Web. We would like to set the next standard, so that people will find it so easy to do things at work that they'll wonder why they can't do them on the Internet."

I saw this piece this morning but missed the fact that it spanned two pages heh.. so thanks to slashdot posting a thread on it also, i went and had another look.

Does anyone have more insight into this? It would be good to get a little clarification on whether this is going to be used on the WWW aswell as company intranets etc...

Googles More Adwords Feature

Thread Title: AdWords Exposed! Thread Url: Thread Description:

I don't seem to be able to see this but Cory Kleinschmidt over at the Traffick post threadlinked above (among a whole bunch of others) can.

Here's a snippet from the post:

Unless my normally eagle eyes had been failing me, Google has quietly introduced a way to view all AdWords listings relating to your search by clicking a link titled "More >>" at the bottom of the first-page search results listings. Clicking the link displays a page of nothing but sponsored links, presumably all of the available AdWords advertisers for that keyword phrase.

At first *thought* this seems pretty cool to me, there are searches that just do NOT bring up good results but do bring up great adwords.

Kinda Related: How long as the "search within results" feature been on the bottom of the Google SERPS? Whilst looking for the "more" link i saw that for the first time today and dont remember hearing about it...?

Opinions on More Adwords?

Search Marketing Paranoia - Removing Footprints and other Tracks

Thread Title: Removing Footprints Thread Url: Thread Description:

WmW's rogerd has an interesting discussion going in the threadlink above on seo paranoia. Specifically about the need (or not) to remove software footprints and kicks off by listing a few of the easier ones to spot:

Some of the most obvious steps: 1) Remove "powered by" and similar text. 2) Remove on-page "copyright" text or convert to image. 3) Change default installation directory and file names to foil both searches and brute-force attacks. 4) Remove/change other giveaways (ancient SEOs remember the infamous "blueline.gif" that undid many thousands of pages), i.e., anything that a hacker or other problem user could plug into a search engine to easily find sites using particular software.

The way i look at it is this: If you know you are employing high risk tactics, or you think that people using the same software might be, remove everything. In fact, dont stop there - change every conceivable bit about the scripts as you can including templates, urls structures, admin script names - the whole damn lot.

If you're not in that kind of area: Do it anyway.

So, taking it some steps further How paranoid should one be, or is there no need? Other than removing footprints from software, what else can one do to fly beneath the algorithmic radar? Classic pitfalls? Consequences and considerations apart from SE's?

Just how far do you need to go?

Sandbox: Can it be Detected by a Tool?

Thread Title: Sandbox Detection Tool by SOCEngine Thread Url: Thread Description:

Barry Schwartz over at seroundtable links to a tool that claims to detect whether or not a site has been "sandboxed" - see threadlink above for details.

Now, as far as i understand sandbox, it's pretty simple to see if your site is affected by it right? So, what is the point of a tool to do this for you?

I could be missing something, if so, please point out the obvious to me :-)

Is SEO a Dying Profession?

Thread Title: Death of SEO? Thread Url: Thread Description:

Aaron Wall of threadlinked above points to a post by renagade moderator Sebastian over at SEW that states that SEM companies will be dropping like flies in 2005.

I tend to agree with Sebastian and Aaron seems to agree in part:

General broad SEO services for some random set fee to tons of clients will be a business model that provides less and less value as time passes and search advances.

Which is pretty much where I stand. Many SEO outfits will drop im thinking. It will be dinasoars that can't/wont move with the times and a large number of "the kiddies" - those seo's fresh out of school that have thrown up a website claiming seo-expertise.. (the ones that litter the forums with google-worshipping noise).

Good ridance.

Aaron goes on to point out that niche SEO and highly specific SEO services will always have a place as long as search dominates the way we find information - arguably that day may come to an end, but not for a few years yet i reckon.

For those willing to hustle and adapt rapidly, i'd say the future is bright whatever the search engines throw at us next year. For the incompetent or decrepit, it's game over...

Thoughts from TW boys and girls on the state of SEO in 2005?

Talking Search Engines - BBC Report on Speegle

Thread Title: Speech takes on search engines Thread Url: Thread Description:

The BBC have a report threadlinked above on Scottish invention that was launched in November this year.

People visiting Speegle can select one of three voices to read the results of a query or summarise news stories from sources such as the BBC and Reuters.

"It is still a bit robotic and can make a few mistakes but we are never going to have completely natural sounding voices and it is not bad," said Speegle founder Gordon Renton.

"The system is ideal for people with blurred vision or for those that just want to search for something in the background while they do something else.

Sounds like a crap idea to me and not much use to visually impaired despite the seeming benefit - i'd rather have my software tuned to my needs and read out pages according to those needs.

Has anyone tried it?

New UK Beta Engine Claims to Remove Deletion Requests in 1/2hr

Thread Title: Thread Url: Thread Description:

Netimperitive report on a new beta search engine specific to the UK - they're making some fairly large claims, not least of which is the following:

Seekport Internet Technologies’ managing director Joachim Kreibich said: “We can remove material from our index within half an hour of receiving a request. For European users this is a key issue, particularly as deletion requests from US search vendors typically have to be routed back through the US and it can take weeks for anything to happen.”


Only search engine to support its technology with local index teams in each country They will show only 1 in 10 US results as opposed to an average of 1 in 3 for US engines promoting UK specific searches It's german site (also has a french one .de and .fr) says it's one of Espotting's largest customers

It's in Beta now, so go have a play and tell us what you make of it...

Just How Dangerous are Link Networks? - Coop Ad Network

Thread Title: Digital Point's Cooperative Ad Network Thread Url: Thread Description:

Aaron Wall of has a nice write up threadlinked above, of Shawn from DigitalPoint's Coop Ad Network where members post code to their pages that display links to other members of the network's sites.

It's a little more complex than just that of course, here's a snippet from Aarons post:

Coop Ad Network Rating as Currency: The Coop Ad Network rating is actually becoming a currency...

selling question sales offer buy offer

Where there is Value... When other people sign up under your account you gain added network credits. Some people are sending out affiliate link embedded emails recommending the coop ad network.

Now, i know the network is working well becuase i read over at dp quite a bit, time permitting, but in an amazing coincidence glengara over at SEW posts a warning (apparently out of the goodness of his heart..) about the network just an hour or so later.

I have to say that such a network would indeed worry me. So the questions are:

Is the COOP Ad Network potentially dangerous with regard to Google/Yahoo! link scheme penalties? Are all such networks to be avoided? Is it a great idea that benefits everyone?

Tell us what you think of ad networks in general and specifically the COOP Network...

SEMPO send a press release....

Thread Title: ... shhhh don't laugh too loudly .... Thread Url: Thread Description:

via inman news

I don't know if the news that SEMPO are doing some work or the content is more newsworthy. I'll let you make your own mind up

Dave Naylor & Jason Duke talk Hilltop and LocalScore Algos

Thread Title: Jason Duke Thread Url: Thread Description:

DaveN posts over at his new blog threadlinked above on the Hilltop algo and LocalScore according to JasonD - A worthwhile short read, here's a snippet:

New Google Ranking Formula = {(1-d)+a (RS)} * {(1-e)+b (PR * fb)} * {(1-f)+c (LS)}

Like the old algo there are damping factors in place and again what we don’t know what they are so once again I haven’t included them in my plain English example, just leaving factors we can work with and can deliver and/or register.

The Hilltop algo adds to the old Algo by giving a further multiplier, the LocalScore Rank (LS)

Note, although Jason says in the comments, "check my other articles" i cant find a link to them on his site?

Google Suggest - Cracked!

Thread Title: Google Suggest Dissected Thread Url: Thread Description:

Want the Google Suggest Javascript uncompressed and fully commented?

Damn right you do! Check the threadlink above for the full source courtesy of chris justas

Dec 16/2004: Yet Another Google BL Update

Thread Title: Backlink update. Thread Url: Thread Description:

Last Google backlink updates was Nov 25 so we are still having backlink updates about once a month which is the way it has been for at least the last 4 or more years.

Since the Toolbar PR update has gone to what it looks like every 3 months (we are at day 71 now) instead of at the same time as the BL update, the interest in BL updates is almost dead. Google only shows a sample of the backlinks so it makes the number of blacklinks shown almost meaningless.

Looks like it is going to be in the new year before we have another toolbar PR update. Even the interest in toolbar PR updates is falling. What is the world coming to : )

Search Engine Filters and Penalties

Thread Title: Google, filters and penalties Thread Url: Thread Description:

This one gets asked a lot but there is some decent advice and comments on this one.


The discussion about whether or not there is such a thing as "filters" being applied by Google has come up several times, so it seems it would be good idea to examine the issue and get a clear picture about how filters operate.

Good idea Marcia :)


some google penalties


“Slow Death”

-30 ( )


Guestbook / Links Pages

Site Has PageRank but will Not Pass it On

Prime Keyword Penalties ( oop )

Other Factors Redirects, Duplicate Pages or very simalar Pages

I wonder how many of these Mr DaveN has encountered personally? hehehe

All in all a top thread, one for the bookmarks to show people. Knowing the faces present here, would anyone care to add? Perhaps even suggest some known Yahoo ones?

Google Library: Google Adding Major Libraries to Database

Thread Title: Indexing 15 Million Books Thread Url: Thread Description:

Google is on it's way of indexing the worlds information with an estimated 15 millions books with a indexing cost of around $10 a piece! Question is how they going to monetize it.

Note: It's a New York Times Article so you need to register to read full article or use Bugmenot :)

Google, the operator of the world's most popular Internet search service, plans to announce an agreement today with some of the nation's leading research libraries and Oxford University to begin converting their holdings into digital files that would be freely searchable over the Web.

Although Google executives declined to comment on its technology or the cost of the undertaking, others involved estimate the figure at $10 for each of the more than 15 million books and other documents covered in the agreements. Librarians involved predict the project could take at least a decade.

SES Chicago Covarage by Barry Schwartz

Thread Title: Live from SES Chicago 2004 Thread Url: Thread Description:

Barry Schwartz has started his covarge of SES Chicago. Catch the updates in the threadlink above at SEW and do stop in and say hello if you're at SES this week and reading Threadwatch...

Serve the public only really, really old news -MSN vs Google

Thread Title: Serve the public only really, really old news Thread Url: Thread Description:

Microsoft's ace in the hole is the ability to put its search tools in Windows and Office.

This angle was covered to death in the forums months ago. In a way, I'm glad to see JohnQ getting a (small) reality-check, but I'm not sure if I can stomach too much of it.

A good quote or two, though. OK, well, one good quote:

"previously neglected with the complacency only a monopolist can muster"

IBM wants to be the Google of Entreprise Search

Thread Title: IBM is building software it hopes will make it the Google of corporate-search technology Thread Url: Thread Description:

As IBM dumps it's PC biz it's making a play for a higher margin software / solution model:

The new database-related software will let corporate customers store documents in XML, or Extensible Markup Language, format, which will greatly speed up text-related queries, she said. An early, or alpha, version of the tool is being tested with about 30 customers and is expected to be completed in the second half of next year. IBM has not named the product or decided how to package it.

Purchase Stats Relating to Search Queries

Thread Title: comScore Study Reveals the Impact of Search Engine Usage on Consumer Buying Thread Url: Thread Description:

Some interesting stats from a new comScore survey on the influence of Search on consumer buying in the consumer electronics / computers category point out by Gary.

Here are the highlights:

Vast Majority of Search-Influenced Buying Occurs Either Offline or in Subsequent Internet User Sessions 25 percent of searchers ultimately purchased a CE/C product 92 percent of these purchases occurred offline Among the 8 percent of post-search purchases that were made online, the vast majority occurred in subsequent user sessions Only 15 percent of online purchases following a CE/C search occurred in the same user session as the search itself With 85 percent of conversions occurring in a latent (or non-search) session Nearly 40 percent of all purchases occurred 5 to 12 weeks after the initial CE/C search was conducted.

There's quite a bit more at the threadlink above... now Redirecting to (for brits)

Thread Title: Link goes to Thread Url: Thread Description:

Word comes in from Threadwatch member Andy that UK users are being redirected from .com to google addresses.

This has always happened in Denmark as far as i can remember and i beleive elsewhere.

What does it mean for UK search marketers? Anyone in the UK wanna fill us in on the details...