The Idea Dude


Thursday, March 30, 2006

Google, the new Rome?

We were playing 'remember when' in the office yesterday. There was a time, when no-one believed you could write another search engine and Yahoo was king. Today, Google has usurped the crown. But for how long? Those who believe that they are invincible should take a page from history. While I wouldn't short Google now, and not for a couple of years to come, it is not inconceivable that the next Internet powerhouse is busy being hatched in some small space somewhere.

The reason for Google's meteoric rise was their difference approach to search engine indexing. Their brilliant premise was to use in-bound linking to establish relevancy, i.e. let the people index the web for you by their implicit votes via links. But human creativity will find a way to exploit every great business model and today they battle against link farms, cloaking and a myriad other schemes. Regardless of how much money and Ph.Ds they have, they are facing a thousand fold of minds out there every day thinking of ways to manipulate the current algorithms for their own benefit. As a result a routine search these days doesn't seem to be much better than pre-Google days, and the norm today is to slog through pages of irrelevance before finding what you want. Whether they are a one hit wonder, time will tell. But the long view from here is that within 5 years, there will be a new search king, at which point the phrase, 'The king is dead, long live the king...'

Or as my daughter so aptly punctuates her conversations recently...'Who will be the next American Idol!'


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