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I was in a meeting a while ago and somebody was discussing a new project—this was in an area I hadn't touched for a while—and I said "Oh, isn't it the case that such and such?" And they kind of snorted derisively and said, "Yeah, well, that's the way the Web was four years ago, but that approach doesn't work anymore." I think that's happening constantly.
It sounds like page rank uses consensus as a stand-in for credibility. That slippage is hardly unique to Google-all of us use consensus as a stand-in for credibility sometimes-but it can be pretty misleading.
Yeah, that's always a problem. One way we try to counter that is diversity. We haven't figured out any way to get around majority rules, so we want to show the most popular result first, but then after that, for the second one, you don't want something that's almost the same as the first. You prefer some diversity, so there's where minority views start coming in.
I often analyze search results and see one in there that seems like it came in from another planet -
Interesting. Not the "correct" result. Not the "most relevant" result. Not the "best" result.
The "most popular" result.
how do they determine what is the most popular result?