Search Headlines & Links: October 4, 2006

Below, a recap of stories posted today to the Search
Engine Watch Blog, along with other items we’ve spotted but not blogged

From The SEW Blog…

  • September 2006 Search News Recap Posted

    The latest edition of my monthly Search Engine Report newsletter is now
    online, recapping top stories in search from the past month. You can read it
    online or receive it via email for free by signing up here. If you’re a Search
    Engine Watch member, the latest edition of Search Engine Update newsletter has
    also been posted. That newsletter carries more items than the Search Engine
    Report newsletter and goes out twice per month….
  • Your
    Name Here On Google’s Home Page

    Via the New York Times Pogue’s Post, Custom Google is a way to get the Google
    home page showing whatever words you want in place of the Google logo — but
    using the Google logo’s style. You’re supposed to be able to do the same for
    the Yahoo home page, that that simply takes me to a page of paid links. You
    aren’t actually changing the Google home page, of course. Instead, you’ll go
    to a customized version on a third party site, such as this example. But it
    can be a fun way to trick your friends into…
  • Yahoo
    Travel Upgrades Maps, Adds More Features

    Earlier this week Yahoo upgraded its Travel Guides with more dynamic mapping
    (including satellite and hybrid maps), more community features and the
    addition of a “My Travel Module,” not unlike the recent introduction of “My
    Local” on Yahoo Local….
  • Clusty
    Labs & Clusty Cloud Creator

    Given that Clusty has just had a birthday they’re celebrating by introducing
    the Clusty Labs. If you’re familiar with Google Labs you’ll know exactly where
    they’re going with this. There’s not a great deal there are the moment
    however; a one stop site about Benjamin Franklin (Clusty Ben) Shakespeare
    Searched and something new – the Clusty Cloud Creator (I wonder if they could
    have managed any more alliteration?) Clouds are of course nothing new, but
    what this offering allows users to do is to simply put in their own search
    term(s) and the CCC will produce a cloud on the…

  • Washington Post On Google’s I’m Feeling Lucky Button

    The Washington Post has a nice article on Google’s “I’m Feeling Lucky” button.
    Even though fewer than one percent of Google searchers use the button, Google
    refuses to remove it. Marissa Mayer, vice president for search products and
    user experience, said “If we took it away, there would be mass protests
    worldwide.” I believe it, I really do. The article says that “Google
    loyalists” get the impression from the button a “touch of whimsy and
    reassurance that the company doesn’t take itself too seriously.” This may
    explain why Google has on many of their contextual ads, the line, “Ads by…
  • Eric
    Schmidt Warns Politicians That Elections Will Forever Change

    The Financial Times reports that Eric Schmidt, CEO of Google, warned
    politicians at a Tory party conference in Bournemouth that the outcome of
    general elections will be changed “within five years” by what Eric Schmidt
    calls “truth predictor” software….
  • Yahoo
    Rolls Out PPC Ads In Mobile Search Results

    Yahoo is launching (in beta) paid-search ads in mobile in the U.S. and
    expanding its test program in the U.K. Only a “select group of advertisers”
    are initially included (it’s not clear what the criteria are). But the number
    of advertisers will expand over time as the program rolls out. According to
    the press release, “consumers will be able to click on the sponsored search
    results to go to the advertisers’ mobile web site or a landing page to get
    more information about the advertisers’ offerings, including the ability to
    call the advertiser.”…
  • How
    Google’s Q&A One Box Results Work

    The Google Operating Systems blog has slides from Peter Norvig’s presentation
    at UC Berkeley on how the Google One Box Q&A results work. He says that
    “Google doesn’t use predefined patterns, they find the patterns from examples,
    as this approach is more scalable.” The slides show the algorithms that detect
    these patterns from examples. Is it perfect? No. Ben at the Search Engine
    Roundtable discovered Google OneBox Q&A Adult Spam last month, in which Matt
    Cutts confirmed to be an issue with the OneBox extractor code….
  • Put
    Google Gadgets & No Clickthrough Needed Google Search On Your Site

    Niall Kennedy has a good summary of Google’s Universal Gadgets that can now be
    put on the Google Personalized Homepage, Google Desktop, Google Pages or your
    own web site using the Google Gadgets For Your Webpage collection of applets.
    The Google announcement on this is here and tells you how you can even have
    your own pony. Google also announced the release of Google AJAX Search API
    that enables you to place a Google search box on your site. Google’s allowed
    this for ages, but with AJAX, people can search without having to leave your
    web site….
  • The
    Google Literacy Project

    Reuters reports that Google, in conjunction with LitCam and UNESCO’s Institute
    for Lifelong Learning, has formed The Literacy Project. The site, hosted at, brings together Google Book Search, Google Scholar, Google Video,
    Google Maps, Blogger, and Groups into one landing page. The site was launched
    at the Frankfurt Book Fair with hopes to combat global illiteracy. Nikesh
    Arora, vice president of Google’s European operations said, “Google’s business
    was born out of a desire to help people find information.”…
  • More on’s Rebranding Effort

    Today’s SearchDay article, Rebranding, Part Two, continues guest
    writer Rae Hoffman’s interview with’s Senior User Experience Analyst
    Michael Ferguson on how the company successfully re-engineered its flagship
    web site….

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