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...This post is an attempt to take all of the things I've seen in the past six months and tell a story driven by real data. This is the story of how I think Google will look by the end of 2014, and what that implies about their direction and core philosophy.
In April of 2012, I launched "Project Algo Alert", a prototype that would later become MozCast. What was originally one "weather" station, designed to measure daily fluctuations in top 10 rankings across 1000 keywords, has evolved into 11 stations and three unique systems. One of those systems is Feature Alert, which was based on a simple idea – how could we detect when Google launched new SERP features, without any prior knowledge of what those features would be?
Feature Alert solves this problem by cataloging the basic building blocks of Google's source code, the container names and IDs in CSS....
When we see a new feature in testing and then realize it already exists on mobile, odds are good that that change is coming to desktop soon.
Unstable search results, in which rankings repeatedly undergo drastic changes, are a clear sign of fundamental problems in Google's approach.
I should add that it will help to read the article before posting in this discussion.