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It's all blue sky scenarios for those guys eh? Bill thinks he's going to take over aspect of search on your computer, with everyone herded along apparently forgetful that Bill is known to be untrustworthy; Sergey and Brin kick back and see nothing but sunny days ahead, even though their serps are currently a nightmare of directories and Amazons; Y thinks it sees a profit...
I rather hope something suddenly comes out of left field to knock the bunch of them on their a*ses.
Lots of people trust MS, believe it or not. And, I really doubt Bill has in his mind trying to dominate search for some sleazy, money-making reason. From what he has said in interviews, it seems like an ego thing. BTW, this was the same case with IE. MS was giving away IE for free before it was integrated with Windows. And, integrating it with Windows didn't increase MS profits. Like what else was/is the average Joe out there gonna use as an OS for a PC box? MS already had a practical monopoly on that for the common user.
And remember, when it comes to search, if people find MSN to have results skewed they believe MS is doing for $ reasons, they can always vote with their mouse. Switching SEs is easier than switching browsers. MS knows this.
Lots of people trust MS, believe it or not.
Bizarre... it takes all kinds, I guess.
One thing for sure, G shouldn't be too complacent about it. Imho, G has for obvious reasons been focussing on their revenue stream the last while, a not unreasonable thing to do, but the serps have suffered in the process. The serps have been the core of what they are, but perhaps this will change and they'll morph into something else. If I were them though, I wouldn't lose the stellar rep they've had for their search results in the process.
Because I criticized the current serps, I should justify that:
Between Dom/Esm and Florida, results were pretty good/pertinent. Post Florida, unrecip'ed links were given more weight, a lot of link-farming was removed... serps were not bad but directories etc started rising. The process has continued and I now find many searches, other than very technical, specific, science, niche type, to be verging on ridiculous because of directories linked to directories ad infinitum. Our own site was barely affected but we did have some kw's that bring in traffic get shifted from #1-2 to 3-5, with about.com, empty bogus directories, etc, now above us.
As a user, I find G to be not very helpful for a lot of searches at the moment. I expect this will change soon, now that we seem to be in a period of ever-algoflux, but in the short term G is in danger of being overtaken by better engines, by those who don't know about the flux.
That said, I don't find any of the other SE's a whole lot better. A pox on all their houses, I say... ;-)
If one compares Google's results to Yahoo's, it can be argued for for most surfers both are satisfactory. (if G hands you 7 relevant sites in the top ten and Y hand you 5, an average surfer may not have the incentive to change from one SE to another.) Same is the case with MSN. They don't have to be excellent. Just serve 3 relevant sites in the top 10 and the average Windows users is stuck with them. That should not cost them more than 5B dollars, probably much less.
I seem to recall reading that in Longhorn (code name for what will be the Win XP successor), by default it would have a search box that would use MSN. Of course anyone could still go to google.com. However, as Netscape knows all too well, the power of default configuration is very great. Like you say, for the average punter so long as it serves up a sufficent number of relevant sites, that may be enough to satify them. In my logs, and logs of other sites I have seen, MSN already is a significant player in search.
[edited by: rfgdxm1 at 2:27 am (utc) on Mar. 22, 2004]
Amen...I must say that unfortunately when my sites were invisable due to the directory madness, I opted to list on a couple industry sites. Last update I came back on top, this past week seeing the directories taking the top spot for our most competitive "money" terms. Hope this directory dominance isn't the future of Google.
It made absolutely no good scientific sense for the US to ever put a man on the moon. It was all because the US was embarrassed the Soviet Union was kicking their butts in space exploration
I agree that it was all about competing with the Soviet Union, but I don't think it was at all pointless. It was scientifically an important task.
To Bill, satisfying his ego is more important than money.
I agree also, but I don't think that Bill having his own SE is pointless. I don't want to see Google go under, but if MS can come up with a superior engine, so much the better for technology.
We all know that we had search engines before Google and to credit them with changing our lives suggests that the writer does not have a full grasp of the situation. If Google had not come along I think we would have survived without it. Maybe something even better would have filled the gap?
rfgdxm1 says ...
However, as Netscape knows all too well, the power of default configuration is very great.
This is so very true and I would be extremely surprised if Gates has not already decided that Longhorn will default to MSN search or its successor. There will be a way that people can switch to Google but Gates has the power to make the use of a Windows/Longhorn search irresistible to those who do not know any better.
Remember that currently 99% (?) of people use Windows to access Google and watch his advertising at the Longhorn launch. This will be Google's big test.
While I'm sure Bill would love to have search bragging rights, the true importance of IE and search is interoprability with other Microsoft products. They want to control.
IE domainating means that other (standards compliant) browsers sometimes can't display pages coded for the "only browser that matters". Since IE only runs on Windows, it helps re-enforce the lock on the average Windows user.
Search would mean MS has the potential to lock out other operating systems from using the best search engine if they own it.
Sometime when you're feeling important
Sometime when your ego's in bloom;
Sometime when you take it for granted
You're the best qualified in the room.
Sometime when you feel that your going
Would leave an unfillable hole;
Just follow these simple instructions
And see how they humble your soul.
Take a bucket and fill it with water
Put your hand in it up to your wrist;
Pull it out, and the hole that's remaining
Is a measure of how you'll be missed.
You can splash all you wish when your enter
You may stir up the waters galore;
But stop, and you'll find that in no time
It looks quite the same as before.
The moral in this quaint example
Is to do just the best that you can;
Be proud of your self, but remember
There's NO INDISPENSABLE man!
(for man read Search Engine, i.e. AV, Google, Yahoo or whatever.)
We all knew this year was going to be one of the most interesting in SE's and so its proving
Yahoo have used 75% human intervention / algo to reduce their idea of Spam
( Beauty is in the eye of the beholder )
Google have used 99% algo to reduce their idea of Spam
( i have seen major collateral damage to innocents )
What will Microsoft use
Also the way SE's handle sites they penalise is different
When Microsoft does eventualy release new search and Longhorn let the long term battle commence
IBM became the dominant PC producer because, although not technically superior to the competition (e.g. BBC Acorn), it had a name for quality in the mainframe world, and delivered a PC that was well-built and most importantly didn't look like a toy. The fact that they were larger than competing PCs was an advantage as it made them look impressive - the term "footprint" hadn't been invented. IT managers bought them because "you could never get blamed if you stuck to Big Blue".
MS came to prominence because it wrote the original OS software for IBM, and then marketed their own version. It became the safe option for all the companies that had jumped on the bandwagon by making IBM clones. IBM had the money, but MS won out because of a technological advantage.
But that was during the infancy of the personal IT explosion. Today IT is a mature technology and it is difficult for any one company to dominate technically no matter how well funded. For example Google itself, or the inroads that are being made into MS by European governments push for cheaper options such as Linux. The MS move into SE technology is a recognition by MS of its own vulnerability and an attempt at diversification rather than a drive to dominate.
Most of your post is complete and utter nonsense, but this statement takes the biscuit.
Acorn over IBM.....Do you live on Mars?
MS wants to rule every market, it always had that desire. It has made good progress given it is only 28 years old......give it another 28 years and let's see who dominates.....like MS doesn't now;)
It made absolutely no good scientific sense for the US to ever put a man on the moon. It was all because the US was embarrassed the Soviet Union was kicking their in space exploration
It was militarily significant. Both the USAF and its USSR counterpart wanted to put missles on the moon. It would be the ultimate hardened missle silo, just by virtue of its distance.
When we beat the USSR to the punch, they wanted a treaty forbidding putting offensive weapons in space, and we agreed to it.
Don't think the same would have happened, had they beaten us to the moon.
Those of you who lived through most or all of the Cold War probably have a greater appreciation than I for the gravity of the situation at the time.
The MS move into SE technology is a recognition by MS of its own vulnerability and an attempt at diversification rather than a drive to dominate
Most of your post is complete and utter nonsense, but this statement takes the biscuit
MS's need for diversification is a view that has been current for some time in the commercial press.
Acorn over IBM.....Do you live on Mars?
No, I worked in IT when the IBM PC was launched. There were Acorns in use throughout UK research establshments at the time. The IBM PC offered little that was new for that purpose, in fact its Edlin editor was a joke compared to the Acorn. It was also mechancially clunky using floppy drives that were far larger than the norm. But to IT supremos it was "Big Blue" and the safe bet. Increased sales meant more money for further development and Acorn lost the race.
The point I was making, possibly badly, was that at that time IBM was the big name in computing and it had the money. That gave it a head start but it was no defence against MS's technical advantage. Now that the technology is mature, a technical advantage is difficult to get.
Today IT is a mature technology and it is difficult for any one company to dominate technically no matter how well funded.
Harry what you say above may have some truth in it but it does not necessarily apply to technology based on Windows. MS influence through the Windows OS places the ball firmly in Bill Gates court. Do not underestimate the importance of this.
With respect to it being difficult for any one company to dominate technically I would say that MS are still doing a pretty good job of this.
Another factor is the high upgrade rate from 3.1 to 98 to ME to 2000 and XP was driven by a real user need. But that may no longer be the case. Current OS's do the job adequately for most PC users and especially commercial organisations. Apart from games, there is little need to enhance the OS. For example a Win2000 user will get little benefit by going to XP.
There is also Longhorn. To recover its development costs, it won't be cheap, and only MS knows what the projected take up rate will be. If it's too expensive OEM manufacturers will start looking elsewhere, and we may see the beginning of the split between the super PC and the 'ma and pa' version.
It makes perfect sense for MS to diversify. No sensible company keeps all its eggs in one basket.