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There is still the ocational slipups (You will see it with Dynamic/Specific pages under a domain, for competitive keywords)
Also seems like the focus on the domain have gone down which is good in most cases.
There is still some problems with duplicates in the results but hopefully that will be gone soon.
And if you wan't to suggest anything to the FAST team, or you'd like to report spam, then you can do that at:
Yep, and it(they) work(s) like a charm! Quick response from the tech team and quick removal if the spam is really obvious and disturbing the results!
BTW: you're right - the results look really good, much better than before. Even my page climbed from #90 to #37 after 1 year :) Fast also returns latest news for the search on top of the results ... is this new, also?
Sites that i didn't even know existed are showing up as well, before G i hasten to add.
I will probably get shot down in flames for this, but i think they are even better than G's, as the first thing that becomes immediatly poingant is the a near opposite weighting on linking, per se, ATW is letting the site do the talking rather than its inbound links, which i personally believe is where its main comp, on the SE front comes completely unstuck.
Also seems like the focus on the domain have gone down which is good in most cases.
... now that, I don't see. I agree that results have been getting steadily better for a while, but still far too many (peeve mode) hyphen-junk domains in there, as well as assorted totally off-beam results. If I want France then I'll search for France, but I searhced on Italy.
Better, but I don't think G need to be looking over their shoulder just yet.
But most importantly, there is not a trail sign one of the not-so-nice person(s) out of a far southestern state (think butterfly ballots if you're real curious) who/which had glommed up information from my NFP's site and shackled it to a couple of sites that had nothing whatsoever to do with the mission and goals of either the local council or the national organization. It's NICE to not see junk sites with a description that matched our description at the 99.99999-100% level.
Yep. ATW definitely is running the algo heavily based using on page text. ATW is definitely giving better results for certain kinds of searches.
Brett just reported back [webmasterworld.com] from SES and revealed a few nuggets from FAST's Tim Mayer. Could be some of that we're already seeing?
Then I'm glad I never search for commercial stuff there because their non-commercial results are pitiful for subject areas I am intimiately familiar with. Their results are much worse than AV or Ink, and mentioning them in the same breath with Google is like mentioning a Porsche with a Model T.
FAST seems to have no way to understand the value of words. Many of the sites I see get excellent search positions are just laundry lists of words. Commercial sites that sell games, for example, might have a long list of game names (same with bookstores). These sites manage to get high ranking for those game terms, even though the content for each specific game is miniscule.
FAST is not valuing content. It is valuing words, and it appears to have no way to interpret those words, neither by linking or anything else. I can understand that they are trying to craft results that benefit commercial sites, but doing so is pure anti-user.
If people who type in widgets get results that favor a generic store that sells widgets as one of a hundred things instead of a 1000 page site dedicated to the history, explaination and understanding of widgets of every kind, that is an engine that won't get many users and deservedly so. FAST touts the pages in its index. Until it figures out what to do with them and present even Ink or AV quality results, they will continue to be a footnote... which is too bad for webmasters since we should all be wanting more than one search engine that delivers relevancy.
Sure, but look at the other thread running now about FAST. A site gets a #1 ranking without *any* evidence of quality content -- no human directories, no "votes" via linking, and no hint at all of "quality votes" from links from other solid content sites on the same topic (aka, themes).
It's true that all these things can be manipulated, but just ignoring them and handing out a rank based only on words without content, that is just really bad.
Random results will lead to some searches being fine and some hideous and most somewhere in between. FAST does best, great even, for complicated multi-word searches and obscure searches because it has a large index. It does very poorly for one-word searches or common phrase searches because it has no way to sort the results content-relevantly.
Steve, of course onpage factors are, just like at Google, an important part of the equation.
Assuming Fast does not factor in links, does not factor in overall topics anyhow is way off. There's a lot more than just onpage factors.
From my end I can say I find ATW and Google usually on par with results.
I use both for daily searches, both informational and commercial.
In fact there are travel related terms where Fast gives me better results on top.
The only thing where I see Fast lagging behind is updates. I really think a more frequent overall update cycle would put them in a head to head race with Google.
I guess the way of checking these updated differences is comparing Lycos with Alltheweb.
One thing that occurs to me is that Fast seems to put more emphasis on proximity in title and less emphasis on anchortext, compared to Google.
(just got a heavy crawl yesterday as well)
my opinion is FAST is about close to where Google was july this year in algorithm terms, when Google gave (in my opinion) too much weight to anchor text and domain keyword stuffing. the first often led to googlebombing and with cheap domains the second led to spammy results all over.
then google starting giving more value to singleworded www host/domains to fight subdomain spamming, this around august/september 2002.
IMHO FAST needs to fight the subdomain spam, award less value to internal linking and keep using link popularity as a strong measure of a page's relevance, which is obviously what caused their huge improvement this year.
Others are about the same, not unlike the Google rankings at all. All in all this update did beautifully for me.
I also want to call attention of all webmasters who have had a site permanently trashed by a search engine to take a look at Fast's spam policy:
Of particular interest is that they aren't threatening to remove an entire site for a spam violation. It appears they say they just remove or downgrade the offending page's ranking. Anyone who has had two years worth of work trashed by an inconsiderate search engine will appreciate if Fast is spending their energies developing on-page spam filters that work rather than callously blacklisting the sites that may not have realized they were breaking the rules.
It probably takes more effort in the short run to develop effective on-page filters than to dump entire sites, and spam may find it's way in in the meantime, but in the long run they should have a better search engine. Rather than scare site owners of condemned sites into playing by the rules, the act of getting a whole site permanently banned probably steers more than one site owner toward more advanced and search engine specific spamming and sends them underground with their advanced techniques. All one has to do is to look at Google's high public profile in acting out against spammers, and coming down on them heavy handed, to realize they are being hurt by the advanced optimizers they have unwittingly cultivated by trashing the ranks of legitimate web sites.
Maybe I'm wrong in interpreting how Fast deals with spam, but I haven't heard people reporting that their whole site has been trashed by Fast.
Maybe it's fitting to note that several hundred years ago the Vikings left Scandanavia and Norway to conquer much of the civilized world. And conquer they did by being adaptable. Then they spread their genes all over the world by assimilating into the society of the peoples they conquered, rather than trying to dominate them. Maybe the builders of Fast know something the Wild West gunslingers of the US engines haven't yet figured out.
It's full of doorways, keyword-keyword-keyord domains and titles and that seem to be driving the rankings. It could just be appearance though since Googkle clips relevant text from the copy of the page, but I'd put em' on par with Ink.
Not bad, but not in any kinda shape to give Google a run for the money. I dn't expect to find forms in the top 30 results, it should be content.
[edited by: heini at 3:29 pm (utc) on Dec. 19, 2002]
[edit reason] no specific search terms , see TOS please ¦ thanks! [/edit]