I wrote earlier of the dispute over index size between Google and Yahoo in my Screw Size! I Dare Google & Yahoo To Report On Relevancy post. Over the past week or so, Gary Price and I've had several conversations with both sides and have been working on a piece to come out hopefully later this week. We're only some of the many analysts that both sides have been lobbying to explore the claims and issues more. John Battelle's been hit, as has Charlene Li. Today, Charlene gives an excellent update on her views in Why search index size no longer matters.
I'm right with her. Many of the things she talks about are exactly the same points I'm making in my own piece that's underway. In short, the self-reported figures present great difficulty in auditing for accuracy, further reducing their utility as a measure of how good a search engine may be. In particular, I've written before on how size is mistakenly used as a surrogate for relevancy. My next piece will explore how sheer size isn't even a good surrogate for comprehensiveness. More to come.