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A Search Engine by Webmasters
Time for webmasters to decouple from Google
Futur




msg:4455128
 8:31 pm on May 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

Long time watcher (since 1997). First time poster.

I am a small business owner who makes a real-life product and who became webmaster back in the day when the Internet started to give a chance to smaller players vis-a-vis the big ones.

I believe the time has now come for webmasters out there to decouple from Google and start building a search portal of their own. It is a masquerade to now claim and attempt to rely on Bing as an alternative to Google.

There is nothing wrong with Google. They are following the logic of every big business in America that is only responsive to their stack of shareholders. We shall all deplore the logic by which for a business to become highly successful in America these days, it has to become or have the likes of a monopoly.

We’ve all seen recently what happens when the life of all depends on a few behemoths who were not too big to fail. Yet there is countless talent in the world of webmasters domestically and around the world for them to put together a vibrant search portal of their own.

If webmasters were to stop wining about Panda, Penguin, and perhaps the Pigeon, the Chicken and other animals to come out of Googleplex next, and decide to build their own portal based on a collaborative model of their own making, then they would start gaining the security, independence and stability everyone deserves in terms of their source of income to support their families.

It only takes webmasters to make good on the fact that they are the ones who have built and actually own the web, specifically the infrastructure that supports the Content. Taken individually each is worth nothing. Acting collaboratively will give them tremendous power and control over the Web Marketing extension of their businesses.

And it is not that hard. Ranking as well as deranking factors for search algorithms are well known, spiders are even commercially available, datacenters are very affordable nowadays. A task group and a few dollars from everyone could take us all a long way. Some may remember the days when Google Beta was quietly returning tremendously relevant results amid a few other noisy players who seemed omnipotent then. It kept catching every body’s attention. Yes, simple is God’s answer to every problem. Of course it won’t happen overnight, like the Linux project did not…

The ball is really in our court as webmasters, citizens, parents with a family to support… Those who run sites like this may be the ones who ought to kick the ball rolling…

 

Kendo




msg:4473416
 3:15 am on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

What would be the main point of doing this? To provide what we consider better search results for everyone or to provide search results tailored to the needs of webmasters? Although I doubt if there is a difference unless we are looking for exclusion from what is fed to consumers.

Either way, someone has to pay for the maintenance of the service and the data consumed. For anyone that assumes that everything or anything is free, the discussion should stop right here.

Staffa




msg:4473460
 9:56 am on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

someone has to pay for the maintenance of the service and the data consumed

Very true, nothing comes for free but that could easily be solved by an annual contribution. We pay for a domain name and hosting then why not for being found as well. (Which is basically what Adwords users are already doing on a daily basis)

It would also take care of much of the junk sites not being included in the SERPs for it's unlikely that someone with a few hundred MFA sites will gladly pay n times the annual fee.

You pay you get indexed, you don't pay you get chucked out ;o)

TypicalSurfer




msg:4473464
 11:11 am on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

Futur is on the right track. It would not be that difficult to start a community/co-op search engine. The barriers to search that were in place when google started are by and large now defeated. Massive cheap storage, massive cheap memory, I believe when they started running, google was daisy chaining single processor machines with 256-500k of ram, now you can pop 8-16 gigs into a quad core with terabyte disks for a small investment.

If you had a box with a spare gig of ram and some storage you could host a million page index. A thousand webmasters kicking in some computer resources would get a billion pages out there.

Google offers crap for results now, I'm even hearing complaints from non-techs about not being able to find things on google. Beyond that, google has declared war on people who promote web properties, you want to play, you have to pay google. They have become nothing but a global taxing authority, skimming margins better than any ham handed government.

g1smd




msg:4473482
 3:05 pm on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

While you might have a billion pages indexed, you wouldn't have the capacity to service large numbers of search queries. Google has over a million server machines to run their system.

Remember Cuill? Their site bombed for the first few days as tens of thousands of servers wasn't enough to service demand.

LifeinAsia




msg:4473485
 3:27 pm on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

So you could get the hardware for a "small" investment. And you could get the bandwidth for another "small" investment. And yet another "small" investment for the monthly electricity/backups/upkeep, etc.

But what about the investment in software that's going to give "better" results? What about the huge investment in advertising to get people to know about you? (How much has Microsoft invested in advertising for Bing? And most people had already heard of Microsoft.) And what are you going to do when all the other webmasters game the system just like they've figured out how to game Google after all these years?

Not trying to rain on anyone's parade. But if it were that easy, someone would have already built a better G oogle.

Futur




msg:4473518
 7:06 pm on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

What about the huge investment in advertising to get people to know about you? (How much has Microsoft invested in advertising for Bing? And most people had already heard of Microsoft.)


Life, there is in my view 3 classes of webmasters out there. There is the webmaster who is part of a larger corporate IT group, there is the mercantile webmaster who supports web properties on behalf of other small and mid-size businesses and there is the business owner webmaster. This universe of webmasters effectively controls, in one way or another, the decisions on default browsers and default search engines that the larger internet public (surfers) uses. And so therefore there will be little to do to get them to use a particular search portal as long as it returns useful results which responds to their needs. This is a key advantage that no other search portal enterprise may enjoy. That fact also gives this a good level of immunity against the mishaps of Cuill as G1SMD suggested. It does not mean that Webmasters can keep the larger surfing public captive of a particular Search Portal, but they can exert great influence.

But what about the investment in software that's going to give "better" results?


Life, this is not about giving "better" results or outcompeting. In fact, we want Google to be around, as much as Bing or any other. This is as much about offering stable results, based on clear explicit rules as much as it is about offering competitively relevant results. If our respective States were to change or update the rules of commerce every 3 or 4 months, and issue secretive regulatory rules, no business in America would be able to develop a business strategy and/or stay in business for long. Yet this is what we are confronted with in the world of Search. This is about giving every man, every business, small or big, the same chance, just as it was in the early days of Search. When Allan Greenspan in the late 90's acknowledged that the internet has changed the economy, that is the reality that his comments were reflecting.

And what are you going to do when all the other webmasters game the system just like they've figured out how to game Google after all these years? Not trying to rain on anyone's parade. But if it were that easy, someone would have already built a better G oogle.


Life, somebody is always going to try to game the system for self gain or to have an edge. After all, that's why criminals and offenders of all kinds are still with us, everywhere and thru the ages, they don't want to play by the rules... That is why a robust system ought to always have a layer of Monitoring and Correction. There will be less of that though if everybody gets a fair chance (just a bit less I must concede!). Moreover we have also seen that when you have an internet community that polices itself you can get one of the most effective forms of control ever.

londrum




msg:4473522
 7:53 pm on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

if you want a 'community' search engine then i think you have to look at the big sites like facebook to create it.

facebook could come up with a totally new kind of search engine drawing stats from whatever their users were visiting and talking about. if they could just come up with a basic algo and mix in all their community driven stuff, that could easily compete with google.

it could sort of be like bing, stumbleupon, delicious and twitter all mixed into one.

thats what google are trying to do with all their google+ buttons. but facebook have a much better chance of pulling it off i reckon, because they already have a community of millions and bazillions of people -- an instant audience.

brotherhood of LAN




msg:4473525
 8:35 pm on Jul 7, 2012 (gmt 0)

>if it were that easy

Yeah, it's not. I know of a member here that has created quite a large engine and has received VC funding for it, but he started it from scratch several years ago.

It takes some skilled programmers who would normally not come cheap. The hardware & system also has to scale well with popularity.

The backlink services show that spidering a good propprtion web can be achieved relatively easily, but sorting that information and prioritising respidering are huge tasks.

FWIW this topic has came up on the forums a number of times. The solution tended to end up being building 'local' engines.

Kendo




msg:4473605
 6:26 am on Jul 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Yikes this topic was a sleeping monster since May. Some interesting comments though, however I don't believe that Google have a million servers. Nor do I believe that one can provide a public search service of any magnitude without serious funding. I once set up a search engine to spider a limited selection of sporting club sites. The data involved in those periodic adventures was enough for me.

Kendo




msg:4473606
 6:27 am on Jul 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Yikes this topic was a sleeping monster since May. Some interesting comments though, however I don't believe that Google have a million servers. Nor do I believe that one can provide a public search service of any magnitude without serious funding. I once set up a search engine to spider a limited selection of sporting club sites. The data involved in those periodic adventures was enough for me.

Kendo




msg:4473608
 7:09 am on Jul 8, 2012 (gmt 0)

Ok, I give up. I subscribed to one thread only and have been getting bombarded with emails for all posts in that section. I have unsubscribed from every thread that contains recent posts of mine, but the emails don't stop. Isn't there a simple kill all option?

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