Exactly. all this tweaking is a bad idea if long term results are the goal, if boosting income and maximizing the coming IPO is the goal then what is happening is totally logical. We are after all talking about Billions of dollars here. I used to use google as a bookmark, now I always make a bookmark since the page might be gone tomorrow, very bad long term planning on google's part, gets rid of that user loyalty element, makes it just another commodity product.
Since it's self evident that more and more directories are showing up in the results it's hard to understand what googleguy is/was looking at, I'm getting directories on many searches I do now for non technical stuff. Normal non tech users are noticing declining result quality, is this a case of missing the forest for the trees? More and more often I'm having to abandon google searches and use Yahoo, that never happened before, and even multiple word technical searches.
To Google's credit, they did successfully filter out a bunch of sites I do that should have been eliminated due to their excessively spammy nature, we used to have 3 or 4 sites in top 10 for our search term, now we don't.
Interesting as googleguy's comments can be, my ideal source for information does not work at the organization I'm trying to get information about, or if he does, he hates the company, I learned that when a really good friend worked at microsoft, over the years he lost his perspective and started more and more uncritically accepting the ms position on almost everything... too bad, I used to get the real dirt on ms...