Cede search to Google?

Come on Yahoo. Steve Rubel is right. There is so much left to do it isn’t even funny and if a company discovers a better way to do search they can take share away from Google (which, yes, does have a monopoly share of the search market). I can’t find a ton of stuff on Google, though, the job simply is NOT done! Google hasn’t even tried to do good blog search yet, for instance. Technorati/Feedster/Pubsub kick Google’s ass, which is really sad cause all three aren’t very good at bringing you the best bloggers.

I’m sure this will be a topic at the Search Champs meeting we’re having this week (starting tonight). I’ll be there and will report more on what I hear.

More on this on Memeorandum. A lot more.

By the way, I would be willing to bet that Yahoo’s CFO gave a quote that’s now being used out of context.

I really don’t care about search market share. If I did I would have bet on Alta Vista. I didn’t. I went with Google because Google had better search.

Tomorrow? I guess Yahoo isn’t confident. Might be why Gary Flake, one of Yahoo’s top search minds came to work at Microsoft.

Comments

  1. [...] Steve Rubel even goes so far as to announce his personal boycott of Yahoo.  And Scoble Agreed with him.  Although to Robert’s credit, he doesn’t necessarily agree with the boycott, just with the not giving up the fight bit.  Scoble also makes the point that there is still much missing from the search engines. [...]

  2. So after the big-bang that was live.com, what has Microsoft really done? Anything that has significant traction?

    It will take more than better technology to take out Google. Technology has to be part of it — but Microsoft can’t be marginally better and expect to win.

  3. So after the big-bang that was live.com, what has Microsoft really done? Anything that has significant traction?

    It will take more than better technology to take out Google. Technology has to be part of it — but Microsoft can’t be marginally better and expect to win.

  4. Trying to take google on in search seems a little nutty. Unless you’ve clearly got a better idea how this is supposed to work (and a clear business model on how you’re going to make it pay).

    OTOH, Google has released a lot of really amateurish desktop software lately – they need a central design group to establish the Google “look” and based on the mishmash they’ve flung at the wall, they don’t have one. So clearly – they have their core competencies, and they have stuff they’re not so good at.

    This is kind of reassuring.

  5. Trying to take google on in search seems a little nutty. Unless you’ve clearly got a better idea how this is supposed to work (and a clear business model on how you’re going to make it pay).

    OTOH, Google has released a lot of really amateurish desktop software lately – they need a central design group to establish the Google “look” and based on the mishmash they’ve flung at the wall, they don’t have one. So clearly – they have their core competencies, and they have stuff they’re not so good at.

    This is kind of reassuring.

  6. I would love to hear a definition of: a monopoly share of the search market… Monopolies are not defined (exclusively) by share, that’s just one condition (and is upward 70%, not the 60% the article cites. But more important, a monopoly os define by barriers of entry. There is no such thing in search, anyone can make a search engine. By the way, I’ve actually switched to Yahoo, I think it has better results than Google. Mostly, the more relevant result for my searches tends to be higher…

  7. I would love to hear a definition of: a monopoly share of the search market… Monopolies are not defined (exclusively) by share, that’s just one condition (and is upward 70%, not the 60% the article cites. But more important, a monopoly os define by barriers of entry. There is no such thing in search, anyone can make a search engine. By the way, I’ve actually switched to Yahoo, I think it has better results than Google. Mostly, the more relevant result for my searches tends to be higher…

  8. I don’t think BlogSearch has been done AT ALL yet…

    I work in BioTech, and using FeedDemon watch blogs every day using the different searches. The degree of overlap is stunningly small between Google/IceRocket/Feedster/technorati. Something new shows up in one, and then dribbles in to the others over time…

    I don’t use memeorandum, as for BioTech it is,essentially, useless. Maybe good for tech industry but not good for what I care about.

    I would suggest that to do the tests in the future you use non-tech subjects and look for non-tech blogs. Look for cars or something, as I think that will give you a better idea of their coverage. Overall…I would say they all have a ton of work to do to make themselves even mildly usefull.

    Gavin

  9. I don’t think BlogSearch has been done AT ALL yet…

    I work in BioTech, and using FeedDemon watch blogs every day using the different searches. The degree of overlap is stunningly small between Google/IceRocket/Feedster/technorati. Something new shows up in one, and then dribbles in to the others over time…

    I don’t use memeorandum, as for BioTech it is,essentially, useless. Maybe good for tech industry but not good for what I care about.

    I would suggest that to do the tests in the future you use non-tech subjects and look for non-tech blogs. Look for cars or something, as I think that will give you a better idea of their coverage. Overall…I would say they all have a ton of work to do to make themselves even mildly usefull.

    Gavin

  10. Last night I was trying to research a company called Autonomy who make corporate knowledge management systems. The thing was I couldn’t remember the name of the company. It was 4 years since I’d met anyone from there and I could remember the product but not the company.

    So I tried searching on Google. It was hopeless. Eventually, I went to the BBC website and using a little piece of information I’d remembered – that the company was briefly in the FTSE 100 Index in 2001 because their IPO was so successful, I searched the BBC news archive. I found it first go – a news article about Autonomy being kicked out of the FTSE 100 index.

    Search done already? Whatever Seth Godin might say about it, I don’t buy it. There is plenty more room for innovation in search and Google can still be undermined by an insurgent with a better algorithm or a novel approach.

    David

  11. Last night I was trying to research a company called Autonomy who make corporate knowledge management systems. The thing was I couldn’t remember the name of the company. It was 4 years since I’d met anyone from there and I could remember the product but not the company.

    So I tried searching on Google. It was hopeless. Eventually, I went to the BBC website and using a little piece of information I’d remembered – that the company was briefly in the FTSE 100 Index in 2001 because their IPO was so successful, I searched the BBC news archive. I found it first go – a news article about Autonomy being kicked out of the FTSE 100 index.

    Search done already? Whatever Seth Godin might say about it, I don’t buy it. There is plenty more room for innovation in search and Google can still be undermined by an insurgent with a better algorithm or a novel approach.

    David

  12. Alfredo:

    Scoble likes to refer to Apple’s success with iPod and Google’s success with search as a monopoly to cast a negative light on those firms.

    Unfortunately, he doesn’t understand that monopoly share in and of itself means little. It’s the abuse of monopoly power to prevent competition that got Microsoft in so much trouble.

    Ah well, this blog is and always has been about marketing Microsoft.

  13. Alfredo:

    Scoble likes to refer to Apple’s success with iPod and Google’s success with search as a monopoly to cast a negative light on those firms.

    Unfortunately, he doesn’t understand that monopoly share in and of itself means little. It’s the abuse of monopoly power to prevent competition that got Microsoft in so much trouble.

    Ah well, this blog is and always has been about marketing Microsoft.

  14. Also I don’t see Yahoo “giving up on search” either. Its just that they are going back to their roots of directory listings. And now with their acquisition of delicious they can finally ramp up their indexing to most of the worthwhile internet.

    I also look for Yahoo to acquire the new health search index HealthLine which puts a “human face” on searching for diseases by giving you a flow chart for you to more accurately find what you want.

  15. Also I don’t see Yahoo “giving up on search” either. Its just that they are going back to their roots of directory listings. And now with their acquisition of delicious they can finally ramp up their indexing to most of the worthwhile internet.

    I also look for Yahoo to acquire the new health search index HealthLine which puts a “human face” on searching for diseases by giving you a flow chart for you to more accurately find what you want.

  16. I said it once I said it again, weather it be the creator of memeorandum, or a clone, i don’t care.

    someone needs to stick a damn engine in, so i can shove an opml file, and all the same articles, IE: “New intel imac review” are all stored accordingly.

    the one thing that sucks about the blogsphere is that there is a popular story, and everyone in your god damned subscribed list blogs about it. Why haven’t they figured out a system to organize all of this?!!

    Is it so hard… I mean if memeorandum can do it over his hand picked list of blogs, then how hard can it be with your own damn list of rss feeds?

    That’s the one defect of RSS and the blogsphere. Product ABC comes out, and everyone and there mother blogs about it.

  17. I said it once I said it again, weather it be the creator of memeorandum, or a clone, i don’t care.

    someone needs to stick a damn engine in, so i can shove an opml file, and all the same articles, IE: “New intel imac review” are all stored accordingly.

    the one thing that sucks about the blogsphere is that there is a popular story, and everyone in your god damned subscribed list blogs about it. Why haven’t they figured out a system to organize all of this?!!

    Is it so hard… I mean if memeorandum can do it over his hand picked list of blogs, then how hard can it be with your own damn list of rss feeds?

    That’s the one defect of RSS and the blogsphere. Product ABC comes out, and everyone and there mother blogs about it.

  18. i’m a fairly heavy-duty search user and i use google exclusively…i don’t remember a single instance when i wasn’t able to find what i was looking for…90% of the times the stuff is on the first page and the rest of the time it’s on the second page…

    i think search queries make a big difference and there’s definitely a lot of room for MSN Search to not only improve on the Google interface but also provide a better means of capturing or creating user queries…

  19. i’m a fairly heavy-duty search user and i use google exclusively…i don’t remember a single instance when i wasn’t able to find what i was looking for…90% of the times the stuff is on the first page and the rest of the time it’s on the second page…

    i think search queries make a big difference and there’s definitely a lot of room for MSN Search to not only improve on the Google interface but also provide a better means of capturing or creating user queries…

  20. BlogReader: great find…i want something similar for the search engines…maybe some visual means of describing the search context to the search engine…and i believe once you pick the context the engine should direct you the link instead of giving you another list of links…well, maybe if there are quite a few quality sources on the topic then it makes sense…

    the HealthLink type approach would be very useful for your normal users…

    others like us will be continually satisfied with engine upgrades for relevancy and content…

    i don’t have the time right now, but i’m thinking of utilizing MSN Search api’s to create a separate front-end to the engine…maybe a desktop app. to create a better experience…well, atleast for myself :)

  21. BlogReader: great find…i want something similar for the search engines…maybe some visual means of describing the search context to the search engine…and i believe once you pick the context the engine should direct you the link instead of giving you another list of links…well, maybe if there are quite a few quality sources on the topic then it makes sense…

    the HealthLink type approach would be very useful for your normal users…

    others like us will be continually satisfied with engine upgrades for relevancy and content…

    i don’t have the time right now, but i’m thinking of utilizing MSN Search api’s to create a separate front-end to the engine…maybe a desktop app. to create a better experience…well, atleast for myself :)

  22. Yahoo’s CFO’s statements WERE a little nutty. Not that they’re wrong – there’s a reason that Google is successful. They serviced Yahoo for years, remember, and Yahoo didn’t care. Because a search engine is supposed to send you away, a portal is supposed to suck you in. Yahoo is better at the second thing, Google’s better at the first thing. But the second thing is the thing with legs and the thing that should be more profitable.

    Basically, people over-commercialized search and underestimated it, and in that between period, Google made it’s name with consumers and advertisers. But the key is that Google has hit on the optimum model for the Internet as it’s currently set-up. The model is mutually beneficial for consumers, advertisers AND Google, as long as Google doesn’t kill the golden goose with greed – as everyone else has at some point.

    The funny thing is, Google’s first commercial venture – the Google Video store – is just awful. They really need to remain a middleman. But Yahoo is clearly sounding impatient. Things change over time. Google could screw up. AOL, MS, Yahoo, Amazon, etc., all have enough audience to change the game down the road. And the enterprise/mobile side of this is just beginning.

  23. Yahoo’s CFO’s statements WERE a little nutty. Not that they’re wrong – there’s a reason that Google is successful. They serviced Yahoo for years, remember, and Yahoo didn’t care. Because a search engine is supposed to send you away, a portal is supposed to suck you in. Yahoo is better at the second thing, Google’s better at the first thing. But the second thing is the thing with legs and the thing that should be more profitable.

    Basically, people over-commercialized search and underestimated it, and in that between period, Google made it’s name with consumers and advertisers. But the key is that Google has hit on the optimum model for the Internet as it’s currently set-up. The model is mutually beneficial for consumers, advertisers AND Google, as long as Google doesn’t kill the golden goose with greed – as everyone else has at some point.

    The funny thing is, Google’s first commercial venture – the Google Video store – is just awful. They really need to remain a middleman. But Yahoo is clearly sounding impatient. Things change over time. Google could screw up. AOL, MS, Yahoo, Amazon, etc., all have enough audience to change the game down the road. And the enterprise/mobile side of this is just beginning.

  24. Ummmm, none of them are search engines anyways, advertising engines with spidering indexing culling, yes.

  25. Ummmm, none of them are search engines anyways, advertising engines with spidering indexing culling, yes.

  26. BlogReader: I keep using Google’s blog search too, but I like the other ones a lot better. Maybe it’s just me. But I don’t think so. Why do you like Google’s blog search?

  27. BlogReader: I keep using Google’s blog search too, but I like the other ones a lot better. Maybe it’s just me. But I don’t think so. Why do you like Google’s blog search?

  28. Robert: “I really don’t care about search market share. If I did I would have bet on Alta Vista. I didn’t. I went with Google because Google had better search.”

    I don’t get that given the company you work for. I’m sure if it is a choice between MSFT and TinkyWinky Inc around the corner there ain’t much of a contest.

  29. Robert: “I really don’t care about search market share. If I did I would have bet on Alta Vista. I didn’t. I went with Google because Google had better search.”

    I don’t get that given the company you work for. I’m sure if it is a choice between MSFT and TinkyWinky Inc around the corner there ain’t much of a contest.

  30. I think Google cornered the search engine market like Apple cornered the MP3 market. In respect to MP3 players there are better and cheaper products now available than the iPod now, so why is it still no.1?

    - Good Design
    (Technology is used by the young and trendy, or wannabees!)

    - Timing: Released just as the market is getting interested
    (Apple learned from their early release of the Newton)

    - Good name: single word, easy to remember, distinctive.

    - Variation: cheaper, smaller, expensive, personalised, extra features,
    exclusiveness. Keep re-inventing the product to suit differnt markets.

    These are key lessons in selling any product, sometimes we loose focus and forget these points.

  31. I think Google cornered the search engine market like Apple cornered the MP3 market. In respect to MP3 players there are better and cheaper products now available than the iPod now, so why is it still no.1?

    - Good Design
    (Technology is used by the young and trendy, or wannabees!)

    - Timing: Released just as the market is getting interested
    (Apple learned from their early release of the Newton)

    - Good name: single word, easy to remember, distinctive.

    - Variation: cheaper, smaller, expensive, personalised, extra features,
    exclusiveness. Keep re-inventing the product to suit differnt markets.

    These are key lessons in selling any product, sometimes we loose focus and forget these points.

  32. “By the way, I would be willing to bet that Yahoo’s CFO gave a quote that’s now being used out of context.”

    By you, dumbass. Where do his comments suggest not developing technology? Even if any other party develops better search, what is to stop the other player from making the steps? All the statement said was: we’ve got several businesses, we don’t see value in driving everything towards being #1 in marketshare.

    Jeez, Microsoft really has affected you.

  33. “By the way, I would be willing to bet that Yahoo’s CFO gave a quote that’s now being used out of context.”

    By you, dumbass. Where do his comments suggest not developing technology? Even if any other party develops better search, what is to stop the other player from making the steps? All the statement said was: we’ve got several businesses, we don’t see value in driving everything towards being #1 in marketshare.

    Jeez, Microsoft really has affected you.

  34. You guys, geesh, doncha understand the role of the CFO? It’s all about managing the Street so you can beat the numbers. If anything Yahoo is being realistic about the faux horse race to prevent a hype up, it’s all about managing the numbers, and pushing hard where your strength lies. Steve Rubel really needs an Economics 101 course, as does Scoble.

  35. You guys, geesh, doncha understand the role of the CFO? It’s all about managing the Street so you can beat the numbers. If anything Yahoo is being realistic about the faux horse race to prevent a hype up, it’s all about managing the numbers, and pushing hard where your strength lies. Steve Rubel really needs an Economics 101 course, as does Scoble.

  36. PS – While yah all giddy over Yahoo CFO comments and it headlines on Memeorandum, Disney guys Pixar, Sony-IBM-Toshiba supposedly ink Dell deal for eventual mass-distro of Cell chip, E3 bans semi-clad booth babes, CBS and Warner forming new network – killing UPN/WB, Gartner slams Oracle security, Supremes reject RIM’s appeal, IBM Collaborates With Yahoo/AOL, Ken Hutcherson in pointless Microsoft stock-dumping pitch per a gay rights protest, Brad Smith to speak on EU problems, Xbox 360 Backward Compatibility stalls but updates the buggy Dashboard, Microsoft spends huge to say they are small, Project 12 going UMTish, Corel X3 a godsend (needs a PIM however)…and on and on. Funny how the big tech news, takes hours and sometimes days to appear on Memeorandum.

  37. PS – While yah all giddy over Yahoo CFO comments and it headlines on Memeorandum, Disney guys Pixar, Sony-IBM-Toshiba supposedly ink Dell deal for eventual mass-distro of Cell chip, E3 bans semi-clad booth babes, CBS and Warner forming new network – killing UPN/WB, Gartner slams Oracle security, Supremes reject RIM’s appeal, IBM Collaborates With Yahoo/AOL, Ken Hutcherson in pointless Microsoft stock-dumping pitch per a gay rights protest, Brad Smith to speak on EU problems, Xbox 360 Backward Compatibility stalls but updates the buggy Dashboard, Microsoft spends huge to say they are small, Project 12 going UMTish, Corel X3 a godsend (needs a PIM however)…and on and on. Funny how the big tech news, takes hours and sometimes days to appear on Memeorandum.

  38. I like google’s blog search as I’m doing fairly simple searches, mainly to see if anyone’s mentioning particular companies. I don’t particularly care if the blog is written by a A-lister or just some guy on the street. So my needs aren’t very technical.

    I agree with Stephan’s post above that it would be nice if people would somehow tag all of their content so that a search engine can group them all together.

  39. PSS – Don’t miss Dan Gillmor’s white-flag waving surrender per Bayosphere, jumping ship to a ill-defined nonprofit think-tank, “Center for Citizen Media”. Where you can ponder and bluster, without having to do any of the actual hard work, just pushing out policy papers endlessly, going on speaking tours and taking credit for anything good happening within the space.

    And to think, I predicted it, nearly word for word, I mean almost directly from my various parodies, “looking at lots of disparate elements and connecting the dots”. Too rich. :)

  40. I like google’s blog search as I’m doing fairly simple searches, mainly to see if anyone’s mentioning particular companies. I don’t particularly care if the blog is written by a A-lister or just some guy on the street. So my needs aren’t very technical.

    I agree with Stephan’s post above that it would be nice if people would somehow tag all of their content so that a search engine can group them all together.

  41. PSS – Don’t miss Dan Gillmor’s white-flag waving surrender per Bayosphere, jumping ship to a ill-defined nonprofit think-tank, “Center for Citizen Media”. Where you can ponder and bluster, without having to do any of the actual hard work, just pushing out policy papers endlessly, going on speaking tours and taking credit for anything good happening within the space.

    And to think, I predicted it, nearly word for word, I mean almost directly from my various parodies, “looking at lots of disparate elements and connecting the dots”. Too rich. :)

  42. http://www.breitbart.com/news/2006/01/24/D8FBCF686.html

    Online search engine leader Google Inc. has agreed to censor its results in China, adhering to the country’s free-speech restrictions in return for better access in the Internet’s fastest growing market. To obtain the Chinese license, Google agreed to omit Web content that the country’s government finds objectionable. Google will base its censorship decisons on guidance provided by Chinese government officials.

  43. http://www.breitbart.com/news/2006/01/24/D8FBCF686.html

    Online search engine leader Google Inc. has agreed to censor its results in China, adhering to the country’s free-speech restrictions in return for better access in the Internet’s fastest growing market. To obtain the Chinese license, Google agreed to omit Web content that the country’s government finds objectionable. Google will base its censorship decisons on guidance provided by Chinese government officials.

  44. About Google’s desktop software… I think the Google homepage and Gmail are pretty good indicators of their style. And I’d say Google Talk on xp is a pretty good extension of that. I’d also include the Gmail notifier in my list…

    Other than that (Earth, desktop search and such) I would agree, but from my knowledge these kinds of projects are actually the product of Google’s 15% (20%?) policy thing… You know where their employees go off and create… stuff… Seems like they act like a tiny company and it shows in some of their more obscure projects. I mean… who uses Google desktop search? :)

  45. About Google’s desktop software… I think the Google homepage and Gmail are pretty good indicators of their style. And I’d say Google Talk on xp is a pretty good extension of that. I’d also include the Gmail notifier in my list…

    Other than that (Earth, desktop search and such) I would agree, but from my knowledge these kinds of projects are actually the product of Google’s 15% (20%?) policy thing… You know where their employees go off and create… stuff… Seems like they act like a tiny company and it shows in some of their more obscure projects. I mean… who uses Google desktop search? :)

  46. Alfredo,

    If you think that creating of Search Engine is so easy – you are wrong. It’s easy to create lame SE – but it’s hard to create good SE.
    Just like it was easy to create OS – DOS compared to WinNT.

  47. Alfredo,

    If you think that creating of Search Engine is so easy – you are wrong. It’s easy to create lame SE – but it’s hard to create good SE.
    Just like it was easy to create OS – DOS compared to WinNT.

  48. [...] As many have already noted, it would be a HUGE mistake for Yahoo! to give up on search.  Apparently, some of the Yahoo! team agree: This commitment to being the best should be crystal clear from our investments in talented people, research, innovation and new products. Believe it or not, we are still in the early days of search. As all of us at Yahoo! agree, we’re in it for the long haul, and we’re in it to win. [...]

  49. Ryan:

    I do use Google Desktop and its incredibly useful. I have a lot, as in gigs, of academic papers in PDF and Word format and finding the relvant ones would be hell if it were not for GDS. Its quick, obviously, easy to use and returns the relevant docs. The incremental search thingy is plain awesome btw.

    Brian

  50. Ryan:

    I do use Google Desktop and its incredibly useful. I have a lot, as in gigs, of academic papers in PDF and Word format and finding the relvant ones would be hell if it were not for GDS. Its quick, obviously, easy to use and returns the relevant docs. The incremental search thingy is plain awesome btw.

    Brian