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This may seem minor and sure you can just hit the enter key, but I know a lot of people who aren't so technical, and search around for clickable buttons to perform search functions.
If this is an old issue, I apologize, but I just noticed it yesterday.
[edited by: tedster at 8:53 pm (utc) on Oct. 29, 2009]
Or maybe the purpose behind it is wanting to remove <I am feeling Lucky> button without being obvious in removing it?
Maybe because the searchers using <I am Feeling Lucky> button most likely do not look at the rest of Google SERPS and hence cannot be "tempted" to click on somewhere else on Google SERPS? Are there any stats on how many people click on <I am Feeling Lucky> rather than on <Search>?
Or maybe the question is - what is the advantage for Google of searcher using the keyboard over the mouse?
I would think a company as big as Google would think things through a bit better than they seem to have on this one. If they 'want to be Bing' or have some 'Bing Envy' going on, then I would think the little magnifying glass like they use so you can click to search on Bing and every major browser with a search bar would have been incorporated before we started posting and ranting about 'click to search' not being there.
They haven't accepted any government funding or anything lately have they? (It might explain some things if they have...)
The games of children usually draws the greatest amounts of attention.
I'll be using the search function for Google in the browser until Google get's over itself and all of those silly page games. :)
Irrespective of how technology has advanced, or how familiar the younger demographic is with Google and computers; there is a large demographic who does not understand keyboard functionality.
This is a good and valid point, but what really got me was they added an 'extra action' to my wanting to re-search... Amit Singhal in an interview linked here: [webmasterworld.com...] said they were studying clicks through times and were happy to shave milliseconds off searches based on highlighting (bold text) but then they went and added an extra action to re-search using the same keywords for some reason. Instead of just being able to click the 'search' button if somehow I go back on accident, now I basically have to click inside the box and hit return, rather than just clicking search. Why? My pointer is often in the middle to right half of the page, and many times in the bottom right quarter. I almost never go all the way to the top left 'forward' or 'back' arrows on my browser, and I really don't want to... I just want to go to the closest 'mid-point' on the page and click.
Couldn't they at least 'focus' the search box when I land on the page, or add a little JS onkeyDown 'Enter' = SearchNow to the entire page?
Somewhat related, but I don't know if Google or Firefox has control over it. When you enter a url in the google toolbar it goes directly to the website. It used to take you to the google search page. Really a pain...
On google.co.uk I spotted the words "this space intentionally left blank" written below the search box. It faded out when everything else appeared.
LMAO... That's just plain funny.
Do you think they're giving us a 'polite version' of the finger?
I think they figured out my IP, because I don't even get the fade anymore (I just checked), so I didn't get to see that one personally and one thing I've gotta give it up to them for, even if I don't agree with everything they do, is a great sense of humor...