Google SideWiki Review - Google Logic Taken To Its Ultimate Conclusion

Google SideWiki"Logical But Flawed" was about the kindest subhead I could use for a Google SideWiki Review; "From The Company That Brought You No Follow" was another that came to mind, as well as "The Death Of Adwords" or even "Google Reaches The Tipping Point". I'll go through each option as I review this very disruptive new introduction to the internet.

To say that the new Google SideWiki has thrown up a s***storm of protest would be an understatement but the development is also entirely logical from the Googlecentric view of the online universe.

There is that old philosophical question, "Does a tree actually fall in the forest if there's no-one there to hear it?". You could paraphrase that to, "Does a beautiful view actually exist if there's no-one there to see it?" or, "Can a book be well written if no-one ever reads it?". In the real world the answer is obviously yes, but to Google something is only of value if it is experienced by others (specifically "others who matter" - the so-called 'authority sites' - the 'quality' of the viewer matters more to Google than the number of people actually doing the viewing).

<- Richard Cranium (geddit?) commenting on Google SideWiki's own home page

That very concept is the basis of Google PageRank - a page is only of value or worth if it is linked to by others. What is actually on the page is of very secondary importance in how pages appear in the search listings. In fact even as recently as 2008 I was able to get completely blank pages ranked #1 in the SERPS just on the basis of incoming link text alone. You can't do that now after the 'Google Link Bombing' update, but the fact that it was ever possible to do it at all shows how deeply flawed the concept of PageRank actually is.


Microsoft Bing Review

Microsoft Bing home pageMicrosoft's new Bing search engine went live today, replacing both and search (they redirect to the new site) and we took an early look at the new beta to see if it matches up with Microsoft's pre-launch hype.

Our earliest feelings are that Microsoft have really hit the spot this time - looks just right and returns exactly the results you'd expect from a serious Google competitor.

First of all, they've taken the notion of Universal Search and then really added to the experience. Google searches always feel corporate clinical where the new Bing results pages look like they've been prepared by people for people.

And it's not just the easy-on-the-eye image intensive look of the whole thing - there's some really innovative new functionality going on under the hood.