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Marissa Mayer: An omnivorous Google is coming
Robert Charlton




msg:4043136
 11:32 pm on Dec 14, 2009 (gmt 0)

A far ranging interview with Google's Marissa Mayer was publish in Telegraph.co.uk today. It touches on language and translation, personalization, media search, social search, "intuitive search," etc.

Excerpts from the article what she says about translation [webmasterworld.com] and personalized search [webmasterworld.com] are already referenced in this forum's current discussions on those topics.

Here's a link to the article, and also an excerpt of what she says about "intuitive search"....

Marissa Mayer: An omnivorous Google is coming [telegraph.co.uk]
Telegraph.co.uk
14 Dec 2009

...The ultimate prize for Mayer is intuitive search. She wants Google to be capable of presenting information to users before they even know what they're looking for. Amazingly she doesn’t think her team are that far away from achieving what she calls the 'omnivorous' search engine –i.e. one which is able to take a user’s total context – where they are, what they were just reading, which direction their mobile phone is pointed and so on.

 

Leosghost




msg:4043158
 12:19 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Interesting quite how many gorg property cookies that are on the page that is linked to and how many that one has to authorise ( and in doing so reverse ones "history controls " to what amounts to "I accept tracking and personalisation" ) before it is possible to read other than the comments ..

define equines ( both "stalking horse" and those left outside the gates by greeks ) ..remember ..when you have finished ..wipe your browser and your cookies and reset your history preferences inside GORG ..and set startpage.com as your search ( to avoid "intuitive" )..or bing ( for now to avoid marissas dream ) ..and always remember blindly following some links can be very bad for you ...beware of maya :)

walkman




msg:4043228
 3:14 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Anything that is stored can be accessed with a court order. Searched for "little girls," "ammonium nitrate" or for something trying to understand a CSI episode 3 years ago ? Oh well.

caribguy




msg:4043243
 4:18 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

The final sentence of the article seems half-finished?

An omniscient, omnivorous Google is coming and it knows what you want, even if you don't.

...want it to.

onepointone




msg:4043284
 7:33 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

An omniscient, omnivorous Google is coming and it knows what you want, even if you don't.

I actually think it's scarier read that way

decaff




msg:4043299
 8:42 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

This seems like a logical extension of Google's goals..
to get as close as possible to deliver exactly what the user is searching for...even to "anticipate" what the user wants..

Shouldn't be too hard to achieve this...as the average user likely falls into predicable search/usability patterns...etc..

..easy for Google to spot these type of patterns...

FranticFish




msg:4043302
 8:53 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Great! A search engine that encourages people to think less! Just what we need! People spend far too much time thinking already.

internetheaven




msg:4043315
 9:42 am on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

An omniscient, omnivorous Google is coming and it knows what you want, even if you don't.

Only a woman could think such was possible. As a man, I'm well aware that you can never, ever know what a woman is actually thinking because their actions and speech often indicate the opposite ... and even after being married for 9+ years I get it wrong almost daily. ;)

Of course, if Google have managed to pull this off I'm looking forward to asking it what my wife wants for her birthday, whether I should really tell her that dress is unflattering and whether she is in the mood.

I swear that she sometimes says I've got it wrong even when I haven't just to guilt me in to buying more jewellery ... let's see Google deal with that one ...

skipfactor




msg:4043399
 12:54 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

furrball. kak. shake me, wake me up. I'm dreamin' some bad #*$! lately.

Old_Honky




msg:4043423
 2:03 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

She should have said
"An interfering, obnoxious Google is coming and it thinks it knows what you want, even if it is definitely what you do not want, and by the way you can't deactivate it."
("Do No Evil" sic.)

It is bad enough having to deactivate the predictive rubbish that infests nearly every program you use nowadays.

It is my hope that Google would leave me alone to search for what I want to search for and not make a load of half @rsed suggestions.

We are not all morons who have to be told what we are really looking for, or are we...?

sem4u




msg:4043445
 2:46 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

We are not all morons who have to be told what we are really looking for, or are we...?

I think we all need a little 'help' with our searches from time to time. However, most people in the UK seem to be stuck in the land of X-Factor, The Sun and Facebook...sigh...

aakk9999




msg:4043499
 4:48 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Anyone read "Blind Faith" novel by Ben Elton?

It could be an interesting read in the light of where Google is going with privacy and 'second-guessing me before I even know what I want...'

Hissingsid




msg:4043507
 4:57 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

"People can easily opt out,ā€¯ she says resolutely."

Does she mean move to Bing or set my browser prefs to block cookies?

Easy opt out means a link on the home page that opts me out. I think Google already knows that... ;-)

Cheers

Sid

outland88




msg:4043584
 6:41 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Its strange Mayer uses the term omnivorous. Does Google want to “devour all plants and animals” in its path. Perhaps she quickly substituted this for omnipotent because she felt so superior or had some guilt. On a lighter note with the exception of Schmidt what do they do with people who develop wrinkles at the Plex “devour them”. I haven’t noticed many older people with the company, “Soylent Google” perhaps.

Robert Charlton




msg:4043617
 7:36 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Its strange Mayer uses the term omnivorous.

Nothing strange about it. "Omnivorous" is a commonly used word, suggesting openess to a wide variety of inputs or tastes. An ominivorous reader, eg, doesn't "devour all plants and animals" in its path.

In this case, we're being offered clues about the wide range of inputs that Google is going to be examining in returning results for a query. SEOs who pay attention to this are likely to do better than SEOs who don't.

I understand the privacy concerns about Google's consolidation of data... I'm not comfortable about it either. That said, if you have a supermarket or a pharmacy discount card, you're probably releasing much more private information than you are searching on Google.

I think, though, we're flogging the privacy issue to death, and we're not paying much attention to issues of how this affects our websites and our livelihoods.

Mod's hat off here... I see this discussion so far as a wasted opportunity.

Leosghost




msg:4043636
 8:26 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

I understand the privacy concerns about Google's consolidation of data... I'm not comfortable about it either. That said, if you have a supermarket or a pharmacy discount card, you're probably releasing much more private information than you are searching on Google.

I think, though, we're flogging the privacy issue to death, and we're not paying much attention to issues of how this affects our websites and our livelihoods.

Mod's hat off here... I see this discussion so far as a wasted opportunity.


why am I not surprised that you said this ..
apparently members don't think that they are flogging the privacy issue to death ..

That said, if you have a supermarket or a pharmacy discount card, you're probably releasing much more private information than you are searching on Google.

and that statement is ridiculous..the supermarket doesnt track the other shops you go into for the next 180 days

why doesn't GORG need to send reps in here anymore ..they've decided it's not worth their while ( apart from ASA ) ..and it's becoming unnecessary ..when some mods and admins keep trying to steer the conversation away from what appears to matter to most members here ..

if all members are equal ( mods and admins included ) then I find it disturbing that we keep being told by the same few ( who have ..no doubt ..made friends at the plex ) what we should be talking about in WebmasterWorld..this place made it's reputation by being independent ..not by being steered ..

loner




msg:4043643
 8:37 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

... carnivous, predatory, cannibalistic, etc...

Robert Charlton




msg:4043658
 9:03 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Leosghost - With regard to wasted opportunity, an example of what I'm talking about...

...You mention Google cookies. I've noticed a lot of Google cookies too. Beyond those with the string "google" in the name (including Google subdomains and other Google services), what are they? Beyond "doubleclick", what are the other cookies we should be flushing?

We can spend all year hurling invectives at them. I myself don't think that's helpful. Since you've observed them, help us get rid of them.

I did follow the leaked AOL database story, btw, and I'm well aware of how relatively easy it is to triangulate information to identify a searcher. I try not to leave trails myself.

But ultimately, this is a forum about the Google search engine algorithm, so I tend to want to ask questions here like what might be some of the other aspects of "a user’s total context" that MM is thinking about? Is there anything we can do to incorporate those factors into our web presence?

outland88




msg:4043685
 9:34 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Nothing strange about it. "Omnivorous" is a commonly used word, suggesting openess to a wide variety of inputs or tastes.

The post was in jest.

I did though ask ten people sitting around the office at the same time if they had heard the word used lately. None had heard it and everyone wanted to know what it meant. So it must not be so common among many. I guess "we be" kind of lowbrow around here.

I sorta goes by da Webster daffynition.

1 : feeding on both animal and vegetable substances
2 : avidly taking in everything as if devouring or consuming

I think we can all triangulate what you want in a thread you start and act accordingly now. Its the holidays and after Google shut down so many advertisers in Adwords lets lighten up.

randle




msg:4043700
 9:58 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Mayer grows defensive when the privacy issue is raised. “Because personalised search is cookie based, there is no personally identifiable information. All we know is that a search came from a certain computer – but nothing about the users’ identity. We always follow a code on privacy – transparency, choice and control. People can easily opt out,” she says resolutely.

I’m not a privacy freak but the scary part about all this is she really does believe what she is saying which is amazing to me.

When 90% of users don’t know the 180 day cookie tracking even exists, it’s impossible for them to “easily opt out”. In regard to tracking computers vs. users the only capability they have right now is tracking the user’s computer, not the user themselves. Their taking it as far as they can, they are not opting to voluntarily hold back there.

If your interests lie in getting sites to rank well, and more importantly convert, then I agree; understanding the dynamics of this as soon as possible is crucial because no matter what you think of it, its not going away. In fact what I get from reading her comments is their stated goal is to increase their use of this type of information in determining what they return to their users.

incrediBILL




msg:4043725
 10:40 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

I think the original point is fascinating:
one which is able to take a user’s total context – where they are, what they were just reading, which direction their mobile phone is pointed and so on

Having just jumped on the Android phone bandwagon recently, she's saying the same thing I've been saying, that search with context is coming in a major way as GPS-enabled devices start to truly interact with the real world.

For instance, using Layar powered by Google MAPs synching from GPS I can see every restaurant in my local area looking thru the camera in a 3D grid to the horizon. You just look around and see where they are, pick one you like, click it and it tells you how to get there via walking or driving.

Based on the context of where I am and what I like to eat the choices can be reduced to make it more useful without information overload.

Another example of context is standing in the store using the Android bar code scanner, I get comparison price info from other stores, reviews and product specs all in one shot.

Skip the paranoia and conspiracy theories, think future forward to how computers will basically give you everything you need and serve it up easy and seamlessly.

Moving forward, my Android phone could easily alert me it's lunch time and make suggestions of my local favorites based on GPS or offer new choices based on the type of food I like.

The phone could easily know what I like just by tracking the amount of time I spend in a single GPS location, so it'll know where I shop, where I dine, things like that.

Already an app for that called Footprints but it requires manual action to record a location but it's really not required as a little automation could make it perform much better just based on simple information such as where you are and how long you stayed.

Now imagine the phone starts looking for RSS feeds, coupons and other such things for the stores that I frequent and alerts me when my favorite products are on sale so I can save money, simple example of the computer knowing what I want before I ask for it.

The phone can even be smart enough to scan the local grocery stores and restaurants for specials as I'm driving home so I can avoid a second trip and stop on my way home.

That's where we're going and it's almost all possible today.

Life will be so easy when computers can take everything you do in context you'll wonder what you ever did before ;)

ken_b




msg:4043727
 10:43 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

The phone could easily know what I like just by tracking the amount of time I spend in a single GPS location, so it'll know where I shop, where I dine, things like that.

Note to self: Don't lend phone to wife. :)

Label_Lady




msg:4043748
 11:19 pm on Dec 15, 2009 (gmt 0)

Google is becoming like Big Brother. It creeps me out.

kjennings2




msg:4043807
 12:49 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

Google is free. If you don't want to be in it, just add googlebot disallow to your robots.txt (That's the advice I got back in 2003 when I noticed google was going to take over the web, I guess it was good advice.)

Leosghost




msg:4043808
 12:54 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

Google is free. If you don't want to be in it, just add googlebot disallow to your robots.txt (That's the advice I got back in 2003 when I noticed google was going to take over the web, I guess it was good advice.)

that advice is now wortless as you now have to avoid nearly 80% of the web pages that are out there just to avoid them dropping a 180 day traking cookie on you ..and they have reset my prefs from no tracking to tracking 5 times in 7 days ..so be very very carefuul even if you opt out ..they reset as it suits them ..

You mention Google cookies. I've noticed a lot of Google cookies too. Beyond those with the string "google" in the name (including Google subdomains and other Google services), what are they? ........

Beyond "doubleclick", what are the other cookies we should be flushing? Since you've observed them, help us get rid of them.


Some of us are working on it :)..but speaking as someone whose PHDs are not in computing but fine art and science ..I start from a disadvantage ..( a couple of decades of reverse engineering from curiosity not withstanding ..unwinding someone elses cookies is near impossible ..~but many of us do mostly smile in the dark and only are truly happy when it's difficult~ ;)). ..and what one could describe as the "cookie system" was designed to be so difficult ..but GORG have left clues in the past .."pride goeth before a fall" etc ), ..

just let the threads here develop as the members wish ( without steering and trying to avoid embarrassment for the plex ) ..and we will see what the consensus is as to what is important to the majority of non mods and admins ( and especially those who have allegiances to GORG as well as to here ..including ..but not restricted to ..Gorgs PR reps ).. ..ie ..the majority of those of us who make up this place ..

who knows ..as was posted in another thread ..given the time we may be able to find the blue pill ..inspite of the constant encouragement by some who would consider themselves to be "our betters" or "our leaders" ..or the "shapers and molders of our thoughts" in the direction desired by MM / Eric / Matt and their fellow cultists..to just discuss how better to swallow the red pill ..and ignore that it is poison to us as webmasters and as citizens and free thinking beings..

what is going down now with respect to opt in by default tracking and what that does to privacy is crucial to the web and to all of us ..pretending that we can discuss how to best adjust our sites and our strategies to it is akin to discussing what music would best be played upon Caesars violin while Rome burns ..

GORG no longer cares about our opinions ..and they have released many things recently that seek to render irrelevant our domains, our content, our urls ( gorg short url service )..

And we made them ..and now the tail has the confidence to say it no longer needs the dog ..and will buy it with trinkets such as a pseudo open source ( except for the many locked off bits) mobile phone ..GORG has studied what makes people tick ..it's methods owe much to religion ..bright bling and stained glass and beads win historically ..as does "trust us"..even search is now secondary to them ..even advertising is now taking aback seat ..data gathering and manipulation of what information you have access to ..and who provides it ..is the name of the game now ..

they know whats best for you ..and they dont care that they have said it out loud ..like so many religions and cults before them .. they think that it has reached the tipping point ..and that enough of us can be bought by android phones and adsense..

so ..

do you want to be the plex's pet webmaster ..discussing how best to bow and scrape and take account of their diktats and heavy handed hints ..and live in fear of posting something they or their friends might disapprove of here or elsewhere ..

or would you rather be free to think ..and post and make your sites like you want them ..read what you want and say what you want ..link to who you want ..and not be looking over your shoulder ..

if you constantly say you worry about what they do but that we should ignore it and think of the money aspect ..you are putting on the collar and chain ..and they will jerk that chain one day ..they will bring you to heel ..because you will have willingly become Gorgs female dog..

caribguy




msg:4043826
 1:22 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

I just shouted out loud: "Nicely Said!" while reading your post LeosGhost.

outland88




msg:4043830
 1:39 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

Unfortunately all of what Leosghost has put fourth has needed to be said for quite a long time.

And again I’m not interested in buying an Android phone. Please reserve the advertisements for my even better gadget called Postini. Wait a minute I want to rescind that I have some extra widgets to sell so I need some airtime.

incrediBILL




msg:4043841
 1:49 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

<off topic>
For those that want to show your dislike of Google's actions, I highly encourage you to join the Bingathon [webmasterworld.com] currently in progress.

To not do so would be hypocritical would it not?
</off topic>

Google plans on making omelets so expect them to continue to break eggs.

kidder




msg:4043855
 2:01 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

Leosghost - Nice post, I've taken to tweeting quite a few of these just to see if people want to open their eyes a little.

Leosghost




msg:4043869
 2:23 am on Dec 16, 2009 (gmt 0)

I come here and read here ( way way more than I post )to listen and learn from and discuss with all the members ..the kind of post from explorador here [webmasterworld.com] is the kind of post IMO that we all value ..Brett was the first to congratulate explorador ..IMO that was the kind of post that helps us all as webmasters ..it mentioned no search engines ..it did not encourage us to be quiet ..look the other way ..think only of the money ..lie down ..roll over and take it ..nor to whimper and lick the hand of mountain view nor redmond ..

that kind of post IMO is what we come for ..the practical things that help us all from mom and pops trying to get their own htaccess working to corporate webmasters that get stuck with the last guys mess ..

not to be told to be subservient to an algo ..or to swallow PR ...or to accept "fait accomplis" ..

I'm pleased to see that Brett ..and most of us prefer the genuine ( old style ) posts to the NWO ( New Webmaster Order ) ..that is being pushed here by some ( non to subtly ) of late ..

I can say what I know some have been thinking for a while ..because the businesses I have on the web do well for me ..But they are not the only ones I have ..so I wear no collar ..nor will soft words or threats nor adsense make me do so ..and I will decide what I consider private or relevant to my searches ..not some smiling smarmy cultist in the plex.

<already did Bill .( relinquish the use of GORG )..went via bing ..and then decided to use startpage.com ..keep GORG on one machine just to aid in reversing their tracking ..cant try to dissect a cookie that one doesnt get .. can one ;)...just didn't see the need to announce it >

they are not trying to make omelettes ..they are trying to make us and free choice obsolete ..the last people who told me they knew best for me were the jesuits ..got my anti crap / double speak vaccination early ..immune now ..;))

[edited by: Leosghost at 2:31 am (utc) on Dec. 16, 2009]

This 47 message thread spans 2 pages: 47 ( [1] 2 > >
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