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Google search is hands down the most popular search engine on the internet. The engine was launched on September 15, 1997. Google (NASDAQ: GOOGL) is currently the leading search engine worldwide with a market share of 61.9 percent in July. Last month, Google boasted a total 9.9 billion searches.

Even though Google is the biggest search engine in the world, not everybody exploits its full potential. Some tricks will allow users to optimize the results. Here are a few tricks to use Google like a pro.

Quotation Marks: Using quotation marks is pretty useful to find specific quotes. Google will find the exact phrase you typed between the quotes without changing the order or adding more words.

Using Filetype. To find a specific document, or information in a particular format, Filetype is a lifesaver. To use this trick you only need to type ‘Filetype:’ followed by the format. i.e Car Filetype:ppt. File types include ‘.pdf’ for PDF files, ‘.wav.’ and ‘.mp3’ for sounds recorded in specific formats, ‘.ppt for Powerpoint presentations’.

Minus sign. Sometimes some unwanted information will keep popping up on searches. The minus sign will exclude the word typed just after it. The only exception is words that use a hyphen.

Weather and Forecast. Google is the easiest way to find weather information online. Type ‘weather’ followed by the name of a city. Google will give you details on the location’s weather before the first search result.

Flight Status. Simply typing the airline name and its airplane name will show the flight information, status and an estimated time of arrival.

Calculator and Tip Calculator. Google built a calculator and a tip calculator on its engine. Instead of using a calculator you can type your expression in the search bar and it will give you the answer. As for the tip calculator, just type tip calculator in the search bar and it will display a calculator with an adjustable bill, tip %, and the number of people splitting the bill.

Timer. Google also features a built-in timer. Just enter the amount of time followed by the word ‘Timer’ and Google will display a timer.

Sunrise and Sunset. Simply typing the words sunrise or sunset followed by a location will display the estimated time of sunrise or sunset in the area.

Game Scores. To find out the result during a matchday of any sport just type the name of the team in the search bar. The engine will display the result of the team’s match as the first result.

Source : http://theusbport.com/10-tip-and-tricks-for-google-searching-like-a-boss/14712

Categorized in Research Methods

Well it’s been a big week for search, I think we can all agree.

If you’re a regular Google user (65% of you globally) then you’ll have noticed some changes, both good and bad.

I won’t debate the merits of these improvements, we’ve done that already here: Google kills Right Hand Side Ads and here: Google launches Accelerated Mobile Pages, but there’s a definite feeling of vexation that appears to be coming to a head.

Deep breath…

As the paid search space increases in ‘top-heaviness’, as organic results get pushed further off the first SERP, as the Knowledge Graph scrapes more and more publisher content and continues to make it pointless to click through to a website, and as our longstanding feelings of unfairness over Google’s monopoly and tax balance become more acute, now more than ever we feel there should be another, viable search engine alternative.

There was a point not that long ago when you could easily divide people between those that used Google, Yahoo, Ask Jeeves and AltaVista. Now it’s got to the point where if you’re not using Google, you’re not really using the internet properly.

Right now though maybe we should be paying more attention to the alternatives. Maybe our daily lives and, for some of us, careers shouldn’t need to balance on the fickle algorithm changes of the world’s most valuable company.

Let’s see what else is out there in the non-Google world. It’s not that scary, I promise. Although you may want to bring a coat.

Please note: this is an update of an article published on SEW in May 2014, we felt like it needed sprucing up especially many of the listed engines (Blekko, Topsy) are no longer with us.

Bing

Microsoft’s search engine is the second most popular search engine in the world, with 15.8% of the search market.

Bing homepage

 

But why should you use Bing? Lifehacker has some great articles where they try to convince themselves as much as anyone else why Bing is a serious contender to Google. Plus points include:

  • Bing’s video search is significantly better than Google’s, giving you a grid of large thumbnails that you can click on to play or preview if you hover over them.
  • Bing often gives twice as many autocomplete suggestions than Google does.
  • Bing can predict when airfares are about to go up or down if you’re searching for flights.
  • Bing also has a feature where if you type linkfromdomain:[site name] it will highlight the best ranked outgoing links from that site, helping you figure out which other sites your chosen site links to the most.

Also note that Bing powers Yahoo’s search engine.

DuckDuckGo

The key feature of DuckDuckGo is that it doesn’t retain its users’ data, so it won’t track you or manipulate results based on your behaviour. So if you’re particularly spooked by Google’s all-seeing, all-knowing eye, this might be the one for you.

DuckDuckGo homepage

There’s lots more info on DuckDuckGo’s performance here.

Quora

As Google gets better and better at answering more complicated questions, it will never be able to match the personal touch available with Quora.

quora

Ask any question and its erudite community will offer their replies. Or you can choose from any similar queries previously asked.

Dogpile

Dogpile may look like a search engine you cobbled together with clip-art, but that’s rather the point as it pulls in and ‘curates’ results from various different engines including Google, Yandex and Yahoo, but removes all the ads.

Dogpile Web Search

Vimeo

Of course if you’re going to give up Google, then you’ll also have to give up YouTube, which can be a terrifying prospect. But there is an alternative. And a pretty good one at that… Vimeo.. The professional’s choice of video-sharing site, which has lots of HD video and no ads.

otis the cat reviews in videos on Vimeo

 

Yandex

This is a Russian portal, offering many similar products and services as Google, and it’s the dominant search engine in Russia.

As you can see it offers results in a nice logical format, replete with favicons so you can clearly see the various channels for your branded queries.

search engine watch on Yandex

Boardreader

If you want to get into the nitty-gritty of a subject with a variety of different points of view away from the major publications, Boardreader surfaces results purely from forums, message boards and, of course, Reddit.

Boardreader Forum Search Engine

Boardreader Forum Search Engine

WolframAlpha

WolframAlpha is a ‘computational knowledge engine’, or super clever nerd to you and me. Ask it to calculate any data or ask it about any fact and it will give you the answer. Plus it does this awesome ‘computing’ thing while it thinks about your answer (which can take a short while.)

what really killed the dinosaurs Wolfram Alpha

It’s not always successful, you have to practice how to get the best from it. But at least it’s aware of the terrible 90s television show The Dinosaurs.

IxQuick

Another search engine that puts its users’ privacy at the forefront. With IxQuick none of your details are stored and no cookies are used. A user can set preferences, but they will be deleted after 90 days of inactivity.

Ixquick Search Engine

Ask.com

Oh look… Ask Jeeves is still around. Also he’s no longer a Wodehousian butler, but a computer generated bank manager. Weird.

Ask Jeeves

It’s still a slightly mediocre search engine pretending to be a question and answer site, but the ‘Popular Q&A’ results found on the right hand side are very handy if Jeeves himself can’t satisfy your query. And what a good use of the right-hand side space, huh Google.

SlideShare

SlideShare is a really handy place to source information from presentations, slide decks, webinars and whatever else you may have missed from not attending a conference.

 

You’ll also be surprised what information you can find there.

hamburgers on SlideShare

Addict-o-matic

“Inhale the web” with the friendly looking hoover guy by creating your own topic page, which you can bookmark and see results from a huge number of channels in that one page (including Google, Bing News, Twitter, YouTube, Flickr).

Addictomatic Inhale the Web

 

Creative Commons Search

CC Search is particularly handy if you need to find copyright free images for your website (as discussed in this post on image optimisation for SEO). Just type your query in then click on your chosen site you want to search.

CC Search

Giphy

Because really, when it comes down to it, we could imagine a worse dystopian future than one in which we all communicate entirely in Gifs.

GIPHY homepage

 

Source : https://searchenginewatch.com/2016/02/25/say-goodbye-to-google-14-alternative-search-engines/

Categorized in Search Engine

The search function was designed with experts from Harvard and the Mayo Clinic.

An agonising headache that just won’t go away – but at what point should the feeling sorry for yourself give way to genuine concern?

In the past, that would’ve been a question exclusively directed at your GP.

But, increasingly people are turning to the internet in their quest for an answer to their health fears.

Google’s symptom search function allows people to ask about symptoms, and collates a list of related conditions, possible information and suggests when it is important to visit a doctor

Indeed, search engine giant, Google estimates one per cent of the millions of searches performed each day, are symptom related.

And whereas once upon a Google search, you would’ve been inundated with a deluge of links to health forums, blogs, NHS Choices pages and other potentially alarming information, the new reality is changing the face of the internet diagnosis.

Now the new Google symptom checker, designed in conjunction with experts from the prestigious Harvard Medical School and Mayo Clinic, aims to make navigating health content online a less daunting ordeal.

The tool allows people to ask about symptoms, such as a “headache on one side”.

And the result is a list of related conditions, for example headache, migraine, tension headache, cluster headache, sinusitis and the common cold.

Source : https://www.thesun.co.uk/living/1677380/symptom-checker-diagnoses-whats-wrong-gives-treatment-advice-and-tells-you-when-its-serious-enough-to-see-a-doctor/

Categorized in Search Engine

The European Commission is working on a plan to give news publishers greater rights over content appearing on search engines such as Alphabet's (GOOGL) Google, which is an Action Alerts PLUS holding.

Speaking to journalists in Brussels Friday, EC spokesman Christian Wigand said the proposal is due out in the second half of September, part of a broader effort to forge a so-called Digital Single Market in the 28-country European Union.

But Wigand downplayed media reports of plans to give European news publishers the right to charge Internet platforms for showing snippets of their articles.

In particular he said the aim is to recognize the role of publishers as investors in content "and give them a stronger position when negotiating with other market players. This is absolutely not about an EU levy on search engines."

He added that the overall objective "is to make sure that Europeans can access a wide and diverse legal offer of content, and therefore [to] strengthen cultural diversity, while ensuring that authors and other rights holders are better and more fairly protected."

At least one expert thinks the plan may not necessarily hurt big players like Google and its YouTube video-sharing site, but rather smaller players seeking to establish viable alternatives.

"These little guys are the ones that content owners will have no qualms about charging for access to their content," said Matthew Jones, a London-based partner with EIP Europe law firm, via e-mail.

"They are the ones that will not be able to afford to implement technology that will allow them to filter out content that is protected by copyright," he said. "As such, these smaller players may find themselves priced out of the market."

Source : https://www.thestreet.com/story/13686465/1/copyright-reform-to-give-news-outlets-more-say-over-search-engine-content.html

Categorized in Internet Privacy

A major topic of discussion in the tech world is Artificial Intelligence, or AI as some call it. Self-learning systems have been adopted in various fields, ranging from self-driving cars to robotics. Google, the world's most popular search engine has now integrated its own machine learning system as a part of its search algorithm. Google feels that a self-learning system holds the key to handling search queries of the future with greater accuracy. Google's AI system is called RankBrain and it was launched back in October 2015. Its role was revealed to the world through an article on Bloomberg, which showed that 15% of all Google search queries were already being handled by RankBrain.

Chicago SEO Company's Antonio Tooley, an authority on digital marketing, says: "RankBrain's introduction will result in a convergence of sorts in the way Google and SEOs view great content. SEOs will now have to make a greater effort into understanding their audience's complex needs."

Any move Google usually makes has a profound impact on SEOs, bloggers, and webmasters around the world, as they aim to create content that ranks higher on Google's search results. We have seen major upgrades like Google's Panda, Penguin, and Hummingbird that were rolled out a few years ago. These updates were primarily aimed at weeding out problems like duplicate content, keyword stuffing, irrelevant sites, eliminating exact-match keywords, etc. RankBrain is just another major step Google has taken towards increasing the quality of its search results.

Inner Workings of RankBrain

Before we delve into exactly how you can create and optimize your content for RankBrain, let's take a brief look at how it actually works.

RankBrain was created to handle complex search queries. Google receives about 500 million searches each day. The queries are completely new to the platform, hence it has no idea how to deliver the best results for them. Google has what it calls deep neural networks of software and hardware. This simulates the web of neurons we have in our own brain. A vast amount of data is absorbed by these neural nets, and learning takes place. This kind of approach is known as deep learning. In the past, Google's algorithms and rules were formulated by human beings; now, that has changed.

So How Does this Affect the Way You Produce Content?

You need to approach content creation in a way that's similar to how successful businesses approach problems. Successful businesses focus on solving the issues of a particular target audience by understanding their needs, and not focusing on the monetary aspect at any point, other than for feasibility purposes.

Similarly, you need to make sure you create content that is tailored to the needs of your audience. The content must be engaging, and the less you focus on what you think Google will like, the better.

Long Form Content

Try to create long content that addresses numerous issues your target audience might have. Suppose you are selling a product like tailored resumes, then you can create a resource page detailing tips for creating amazing resumes, do's and don'ts from industry professionals, etc. There are plenty of possibilities. You will also want to rank for synonymous terms like CVs, curriculum vitae, etc. Long form content will allow you to insert keywords naturally in the article. Gone are the days where you had to mention your main keywords three times per every 500 words to rank. "Rank Brain uses co-occurrence to help deliver the most relevant results to users," says Didit.com's Steve Baldwin.

The frequency with which related terms appear is also analyzed so that the content that reads naturally gets ranking preference. If you need an idea about what words Google thinks are synonyms, then you can simply analyze search results to get an answer. The search for "tips for a great resume" shows us what words Google thinks are synonyms:

google synonyms

Be Specific and Natural

Each piece of content you put out needs to be for a specific purpose. You might have noticed more social media profiles appearing higher in search results. Hence the content you create for your Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram must all be solving the needs of your audience. You need to provide ideas, tips, tricks and recommendations to engage your specific target audience. If your website is solely focused on resumes, and if you create a post on umbrellas, then it's a bad sign for Google. On the other hand, if your website creates content like graphic design resumes, and things like that, then it should help.

Queries are becoming natural and complex at the same time. Human interaction with Google is more conversational. People tend to make use of long search queries like "Where can I find the perfect resume for a photography job?" The growth of voice search has contributed to this. If you create natural and human content, then it's much easier for RankBrain to synthesize exactly what you are getting at.

A cool idea would be to start your article with a query that you think it is suited for. For example, before you talk about the advantages of protein supplements, your article's introduction can contain something like "If you have just hit the gym recently and are not seeing the gains you expected, you must be wondering if protein supplements really do work." This is a great way to grab your audience's attention.

To Conclude

The role AI plays in our life is set to increase, and it is up to us to use it to our advantage. John Giannandra who now oversees Google's search engine activities says that "by building learning systems, we don't have to write these rules anymore. Increasingly, we're discovering that if we can learn things rather than writing code, we can scale these things much better."

Deep learning might play a much bigger role in the future for bloggers, webmasters and SEOs alike. Hence, it is probably best to focus on producing content that delivers the maximum value to our audience.

Source : http://www.econtentmag.com/Articles/Editorial/Industry-Insights/Keeping-Up-with-Google-How-AI-Will-Shape-Future-Content-113028.htm 

Categorized in Search Engine

It’s no secret that battery life on smartphones these days are not the best. Most will consider it mostly a hardware issue, seeing companies trading battery size for aesthetic design. But that’s not the entire reason, with a large part being attributed to the software used on our phones.

In the XDA Virtual Office, many of us writers will often find the biggest culprit behind our battery woes are attributed to certain processes running rampant. Namely, Google services.

googleapp

There are currently many ways to provide longer battery life cycles, methods such as: battery banks, battery cases, processor clocking, etc. A usual solution is to disable apps not being used, or apps that are taking up a lot of system utilities. What I wanted to do was disable all of Google’s apps and services on my device, to see if it might give my battery a shot at living longer. Instead of just using a debloater tool, or the stock settings disabler, I chose to go the extra mile, and install Android without any Google Apps, or any Google services.

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Since my daily driver doesn’t have an unlockable bootloader (thanks Verizon), I decided to look into the old phones drawer, and chose one of my favorite devices to use. The Motorola Moto X 2014 was the device I had selected for this experiment. For a period of four days, I used the Moto X with CyanogenMod 13 installed, sans any Gapps packages. For comparison, I factory reset the device after the four days was up, installed the same CM 13 zip, and this time installed the Stock Gapps package from the Open Gapps repository.


While using each ROM as a daily driver for four days, I depended on them for many of my usual services. Being that I depend on Google Services on a daily basis, going about this experiment proved rather difficult. Below is a list of the Google Apps I used the most, as well as a list of all the alternatives I used.

appss

 

There are many alternative app stores and repositories on the internet, from the Amazon App Store, F-Droid, XDA Labs, APK Mirror, and plenty of others. To get my apps for this test, I stuck with two store/repositories that I was familiar with using, XDA Labs and APK Mirror.

Going without Google Services on a Google-based platform is no small feat. There was a noticeable lack of functionality across the operating system from day to day. While some services have a browser interface, a couple will only try and direct you to the Play Store… Or the browser site of the Play Store. With Hangouts being one of those without a mobile interface, I was left unable to communicate with a few colleagues and friends.

Speaking of communication errors, Hangouts wasn’t the only service I had trouble with. I may not be a fan of the app, but Snapchat was a complete no go without Gapps. The app requires Play Services to log in, and unfortunately I was left unable to communicate with my friends on two separate services.

Fortunately, my second communication service for my business colleagues was partially functioning. I was able to send and receive messages on Slack, but notifications would not work, as they relied on Google Cloud Messaging. Quite a few other apps had the same issue, meaning I only ever received notifications for calls, texts, and emails.

Trying to substitute google with Cortana was… just not something I subjectively enjoyed. Microsoft’s searching service is welcome competition and is continuing to get better, but it is not enough to compete with the original search engine. The only useful functionality I found with the Cortana app over the mobile page from Google was the option to have a voice search shortcut on my homescreen, which comes in handy more often.

 

Having to rely on the browser for services I couldn’t access otherwise was a bit frustrating. Being used to having YouTube Red, leaving the YouTube site would stop the audio. This was causing me to become irritated more and more often. As a big music fan, I like to listen to and discover all types of music on my phone. While CM’s baked in music app works, the lack of a streaming service caused me to have to resort to alternative, older methods of discovering music.

Using the phone for about a week both with and without Gapps concluded with interesting results. As you can see from the screen captures below, the average screen on time and total battery time on the No Gapps runs was no longer than that of the Gapps runs. However, do notice the steeper slopes in the (slightly shorter) asleep times.

Screenshot 5

These results are not what I expected going into the experiment. Looking at the battery graphs, you can tell that the runs with Gapps yielded more device wake ups, as expected. This is evident by the Gapps runs not only having more active indication on the bars below the graph. The Gapps graphs all have a much more gradual slope associated with them, whereas the No Gapps graphs seemed to level off a lot more often. But screen-on drain was about the same, with the main difference seen in idle drain as expected.

In terms of performance, there was a negligible difference. Apps certainly crashed more often on the Gapps run, with the main culprit being Hangouts (as usual). Running benchmarks on each run seemed redundant, given I was using the same exact processor and CPU and these processes amount to a negligible hit on the processor.

 

All in all, this experiment was fun. Despite the lack of functionality, it was interesting to challenge myself to work around such large limitations. So that brings us to our main inquiry, is it worth it to live sans Google Apps and Services to save a little on battery? To me, the short answer is no. While the battery life was consistent, it was not particularly longer in any way. It might be useful to live Sans Gapps if you are looking to limit yourself from using your phone on a vacation or something, but not much else. If I had to sum up the lack of functionality, I would say the experience is reminiscent of the feature phone days before the smartphone boom.

Source : http://www.xda-developers.com/comparing-battery-life-with-and-without-google-services-a-week-of-minimal-idle-drain/

Categorized in Science & Tech

 

We may first see them on the runway, but the trends that truly stick with us all live in one place: our Google search bar. It's where we ask our deepest, darkest fashion questions — "Are cropped flares really a thing?," "Does anyone actually like baby bags?" — and hope to find answers.

Last year, the search engine finally recognized the power that lies in its records, introducing a fashion report that documents which trends are in and out, according to search volume. In 2015, we saw the popularity of one-shoulder and peplum dresses fall, making way for tulle skirts and jogger pants. (This was the year of athleisure, after all.) For 2016, Google's calling out items we've already seen pop up in our closets — and those we could already sense falling to the back shelves. 

This time around, the company expanded the scope of its research to include the U.S. and the U.K., looking into the top searched-for apparel categories between May 2014 and May 2016. In a somewhat surprising turn, some early-aughts trends appear to be on the way out, even though the '90s are very much in the zeitgeist right now (the two are close cousins, after all, and had been trending together). Google observed a steady decline in interest in drop-crotch pants, see-through clothes, acid-wash jeans, and babydoll dresses. It predicts asymmetrical skirts and waist trainers will experience a similar drop (despite constant Kardashian endorsement) over the next few years — something to maybe keep in mind during your next closet purge.

The search engine grouped its findings into three main stories: military-inspired (think bomber jackets and biker pants), free-spirited (in line with the easy-going nature of off-the-shoulder tops), and ready-to-go (think one-pieces and rompers). Then, there are the specifics: Google identified a set of trends it calls "rising stars," which have seen a spike in interest over the past few months but might not have staying power. These include off-the-shoulder topsbodysuits, and bralettes. The lace-up top was also highlighted in this category for the U.S. market; for the U.K., it was the co-ord. On the opposite end of the spectrum are the "falling stars" — pieces that have enjoyed their moment and are now losing steam when it comes to Google searches. (Suede skirts, we're looking at you.)

Google does point to certain categories it considers "safe bets" — both because they've seen more user interest and because they have seasonal potential to come back. In 2016, biker pants (skinny-fit trousers with ribbed and moto elements) and ripped jeans are looking to be a pretty solid choice, if you trust American and British Google users. The search engine also predicts bomber jackets, coatigans (a coat/cardigan hybrid), and shirt dresses will become even more ubiquitous as the year rolls on. (It's no surprise, then, that these trends are already featured prominently in Zara's fall '16 offering.) 

The report, which you can read in full here, details the rise of each trend and corresponding item down to the color, fabric, and pattern that's proven to be most popular. Here's to going about your fall shopping in the most informed way, ever.

Source : http://www.refinery29.com/2016/08/121264/fall-clothing-trends-bomber-jackets-2016

 

Categorized in Future Trends

A new method for searching the web is needed to allow IoT devices to independently and securely discover other “things” in the connected world of the future.

We are all intimately familiar with the experience of “googling” a keyword(s) on a Web browser search engine to find related websites. For example, searching for “best French restaurant” in Google or Yahoo will return a list of many websites that are related to this topic. However, this key feature of the current Web will have to be fundamentally reworked for the new types of devices that are expected to join the Web as part of the Internet of Things (IoT). I mean, just how is it going to work when your fridge needs to do a search for something - and it will before too long?

Traditional web search engines

When thinking about any technology evolution, it is useful to first understand how the current generation of technology works before we try to predict what will happen in the future. So let’s briefly review how search engines work today.

Search engines primarily utilize automated programs called Web crawlers to discover and visit every possible website in the Internet. At each visited website, the Web crawler makes a copy of the website content and records it back in a large database at the search engine. This database is then analyzed off line, and a fast lookup index is created so that a rapid search can be performed every time a human user sends a keyword search request. The result of the lookup will be a ranked list of website addresses (i.e. Uniform Resource Indicators - URIs) that corresponds to the keyword that was searched for. In the current Web all the information transferred between the Web browser, website and the search engine server uses the ubiquitous and well known HTTP protocol.

The search engine problem in IoT

The existing Pull model of information exchange where the search engines sends out web crawlers to discover webserver information will unfortunately not work for most IoT cases. There are several reasons for this.

First, many IoT devices will be battery or solar powered and thus will often be “sleeping” in a low power mode when not performing their intended function. For example, a high temperature sensor in a remote industrial application may only be physically activated when its hardware gets heated above a certain temperature. When this happens, the sensor will get activated and send an HTTP message to a central controller to report an alarm. Below this temperature the sensor will be inactive and in sleep mode. So in general this temperature sensor will not be discoverable by web crawlers sent out by a traditional search engine as it will be sleeping most of the time and will not respond.

Secondly, many IoT devices will be located in semi-closed networks that will block traditional search engine web crawlers from discovering them. For example, a fitness center may freely allow web crawlers to discover their treadmills and other exercise equipment. However, the fitness center will definitely block discovery, using a security firewall, of IoT devices like electronic door locks and video cameras for security and privacy reasons.

Emerging solutions

A key solution for the IoT search problem is currently being standardized in the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). Specifically, a new type of search engine called a Resource Directory (RD) is being defined. This will be a very distributed search engine, with multiple RDs expected for a given geographical area like a city. IoT devices are expected to register their web addresses (URIs) to their local RD in Push model. This will typically be done when the IoT device is first installed and powered up.

Then when a search request is sent to the RD, the RD will first do access control and other security checks to make sure that only authorized parties are allowed to discover the relevant information. For example, suppose the fridge in my house wants to discover my home electricity meter to check the current time-of-use charge rate. The fridge wants to use this information to adjust its internal temperature up or down, within a certain bound, to reduce my electricity costs. In this case, the RD that serves my neighborhood will allow my fridge to discover the electricity meter URI because it knows that they are both part of my home network and are trusted devices. However, if an IoT device from my neighbor’s house made a similar request, the neighborhood RD would return an error message as that foreign device is not authorized to make that search query.

In addition to the IETF, another important body contributing to solving the challenges of IoT web searches is the Hypercat consortium. They are developing specifications that will allow inter-exchange of data between data hubs in different domains. This will allow, for example, exchange of data between a neighborhood RD and Google’s global search engine.

A bright future

A major reason for the success of the Web over the last 20 years has been the use of search engines to organize and make a huge amount of web information easily accessible to human users. If we wish to continue this success with the billions of IoT devices that are expected to join the Web over the coming years, then we will have to keep innovating. Fortunately, with next generation solutions like the IETF’s Resource Directory concept, and the Hypercat meta-data specification under development, and very much more on the horizon, it looks like search engine evolution is definitely keeping good pace with all the other parallel innovation going on in the worlds of 5G and IoT.

Source : http://www.networkworld.com/article/3111984/internet-of-things/web-search-engines-for-iot-the-new-frontier.html

Categorized in Internet of Things

 

Google needs to strengthen more of its segments

If you have been reading my articles, then you may have noticed that I have mixed feelings about Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOG) (NASDAQ:GOOGL), the parent company of Google. On the one hand I love the stranglehold Google has on the search engine market, its sheer dominance in the mobile operating system space and, of course, the evergreen YouTube angle. But despite having some of the brightest minds in the world on its payrolls, Google is still a one-trick pony that keeps failing at nearly every other trick it tries to do.

As such, Google is still highly reliant on its advertising revenues from search and partner sites, and this is what I’d like to explore in some depth.

Despite having disrupted the search game early on, the company is continually expanding the touch points surrounding its search engine. Take Chrome for example, the world’s leading browser: This is the conduit through which Google gets a lot of its search traffic.

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Another conduit is Android, the world’s most prolific operating system with over 80% global market share. The majority of non-iOS devices that are sold each year come with Android, with Chrome being the default search engine despite the Chinese attempt to promote UC browser on certain smartphone models that it makes.

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Yet another conduit is Google Maps, which has not only made our lives easier on the road, but is also dominating the GPS mapping world. It is the most-used map application by far, permeating nearly every mobile device in the world. It’s free, but you'll notice a lot of it points back to Google Search. Whether it’s a restaurant you’re looking for or information you need about a particular location, search is right there on the heels of Google Maps.

It’s clear that all of these products have one focal point, and that is Google’s search engine. As a result of that ecosystem, Google now has the wide moat possible protecting its search engine business.

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But can the same be said of its advertising business, which is their main breadwinner?

If Search is Google’s crowd-puller, then the cashier must be advertising. As the crowds spend their precious time on Google search and, through it, its partner sites, the company has the opportunity to serve them ads. The more time users spend on search, the greater the opportunity, and Google has been able to leverage this to create tens of billions of dollars in revenues each year.

 

As the world’s internet penetration increases, Google is practically in lockstep with it, pushing its own search and advertising agenda to new users in the far corners of the world. There are several countries around the world where Internet penetration is still low and, as such, there are a lot more potential users for Google to reach out to.

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Though Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) has turned the heat up on Google and is vying to get as many advertising dollars as possible, the online advertising market is expected to grow at 12.7% CAGR (according to Mckinsey) for the next five years, so there is still enough room for both the companies to keep increasing their revenues.

With no credible competitor of size to challenge their mobile operating system Android or the default Chrome browser, the chances of Google search falling out of grace from mobile customers are very slim.

What Google has done is create a legal monopoly on the world’s online quest for information, hosting 1.2 trillion searches per year. Advertising revenue is merely the fruit of that tree, and Google has a pretty strong fence around that tree.

 

The one thing I can’t stand to see is Google wasting billions of dollars with no apparent method to the madness. I’m being brutal, but half the time I have no clue what Sundar Pichai is talking about on the earnings call. In stark contrast are the direct and insightful comments made by Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella when quizzed by analysts at the end of the calls. At least with Microsoft you know the direction they’re taking.

With Google you can never be too sure.

Its Other Bets, for example, are so diverse that the units resemble a massive conglomerate of businesses with none of them showing significant top line income. Perhaps that’s why Alphabet is trying to bring more accountability to Other Bets - push them out of the nest and maybe they’ll learn to fly yet.

With potentially powerful lines of business sitting in their line of sight - artificial intelligence, mobile virtual reality, cloud, autonomous cars, social media, paid video streaming - it’s about time Google made a dent in at least one of them to supplement its advertising business.

Source : http://www.gurufocus.com/news/438938/how-strong-is-googles-search-business

 

Categorized in Search Engine

Annoying pop-up ads that get in the way of content are going to be the new lead balloons: Google’s planning to penalize mobile sites that use them by placing those sites lower in its rankings.

In the web vernacular, interstitials/pop-ups are now a ranking signal for SEO (Search Engine Optimization). Similar to how Google in 2014 push the web into being encrypted by using HTTPS as a ranking signal, this move could be an inflection point for how mobile sites go about advertising.

Google said on its Webmaster Central blog on Tuesday that the majority of pages nowadays have text and content on the page that you can read without zooming.

But the company says it’s recently seen many examples of pages showing intrusive interstitials – as in, the content’s there on the page, and it’s available for Google to index, but you can’t see it because it’s covered up.

Users who are forced to very carefully click on the teensy-weensy “x” to get rid of the things, without accidentally clicking on the ad and opening whatever Pandora’s box that entails, don’t like these things, to say the least:


This can frustrate users because they are unable to easily access the content that they were expecting when they tapped on the search result.


It’s particularly problematic on mobile devices, where screens are often small.

In order to make life easier for mobile users, after 10 January 2017, Google’s going to start taking that hide-the-content tactic into account in its page rankings.

Product Manager Doantam Phan gave three examples of offending pop-ups and interstitials:

  • Showing a popup that covers the main content, either immediately after the user navigates to a page from the search results, or while they are looking through the page.
  • Displaying a standalone interstitial that the user has to dismiss before accessing the main content.
  • Using a layout where the above-the-fold portion of the page appears similar to a standalone interstitial, but the original content has been inlined underneath the fold.
  • Google does not consider all interstitials to be bad news, however.
  • If used responsibly, the following techniques won’t hurt a page’s ranking:
  • Interstitials that appear to be in response to a legal obligation, such as for cookie usage or for age verification.
  • Login dialogs on sites where content is not publicly indexable. For example, private content such as email or unindexable content behind a paywall.
  • Banners that use a reasonable amount of screen space and are easily dismissible. For example, the app install banners provided by Safari and Chrome use a reasonable amount of screen space.

Besides the signal that a site is using interstitials, Google relies on “hundreds of signals” to come up with search result rankings, it reminds us.

That means that sites that have great, relevant content will still likely appear at the top of search results, and they likely won’t feel much pressure to remove such ads.

But taking these types of user-annoying techniques into account could mean the difference when it comes to two sites that appear roughly equal in ranking.

Google has been increasingly working to direct users not just to the best sites, but to those that don’t irk them.

Two years ago, it started to label sites as mobile-friendly, so that users could find pages where they didn’t have to zoom to read text and content.

Since then, Google says 85% of all pages that come up in search results meet the criteria and display the mobile-friendly label.

That label’s actually going away: it is, after all, another piece of flotsam cluttering up our tiny screens.

Google’s algorithms will continue to take into account whether a site is mobile-friendly, but it won’t be labeling sites as such.

It will, however, continue to provide the mobile usability report in Search Console and the mobile-friendly test to help webmasters evaluate the effect of the mobile-friendly signal on their pages, it said.

Source : https://nakedsecurity.sophos.com/2016/08/25/google-to-rate-down-sites-with-aggravating-pop-up-ads/

Categorized in Search Engine

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