Posts Tagged Marissa Mayer

Google gets new look, it’s nice but there are somethings I just don’t get!

Google rolled out their new look to the Google.ie website this morning and it’s fair to say that most people probably didn’t even notice.

Google have decided to add a bit of life and colour to their much loved search engine, which makes it a little easier to spot some of the really cool features they added a little while ago. Things like the ability to search news, blogs, books and videos are now pretty much in your face and hard to miss, unlike the “show options” link they had in the past.

They’ve also decided to style the old looking “search” button and joined it with the actual search box on the inside pages. The logo is a lot more striking and clear than it has been in the past. Overall, they are pretty much subtle changes, but they have a nice fresh feeling effect to it.

There is one change that I really don’t get the concept behind and it’s this… If you visit the homepage of Google, e.g. www.google.ie and don’t move or click your mouse OR enter a search term, all you see on this page is the logo, the search box and the search buttons (as per image below).

However, when you do interact in some way with page, whether that be a mouse over, a click or enter a search term, the other elements fade (yes fade) in (as per image below)…

For the life of me, I just don’t understand why they’ve done this. Is it someone thinking it’s funky and cool??

This is appears to be a feature that is in complete contrast to the reasons given by Marissa Mayer as to why they value their copyright notice so much… Read why Google value their copyright notice so much

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Google staff will select who’s on top in the near future?

Marissa Mayer
Image via Wikipedia

Google, the foundation who were once proud of the fact that their software relied totally on a democratic process in the form of their algorithm to display to the top sites on the web, open the doors for a future that may not be so “democratic”.

Marissa Mayer stated in an interview:

“Google’s use of user data created by actions on Wiki search to improve search results on Google in general. For now that data is not being used to change overall search results, she said. But in the future it’s likely Google will use the data to at least make obvious changes. An example is if “thousands of people? were to knock a search result off a search page, they’d be likely to make a change.”

So is she saying that sometime in the near future, Google’s staff will decide who should be on top?
To me it looks like they will manipulate the search results to favour what they believe should be top of the pile.

You could argue that this is what their software already does although in a very complex manner. Basing their algorithm on a link popularity score, meant it was easily manipulated by SEOs across the world. But do they really need to make this a manual process?

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Why Google value their Copyright notice

Marissa Mayer

If you were new to the web, you wouldn’t be forgiven for thinking the homepage of Google is un-inviting, un-interesting and downright boring. Why have such a large company with all their billions never updated their homepage to make it more exciting?

Well to put it simply, it has been years of testing user experience. At the Google I/O Conference a couple of weeks ago, Marissa Mayer explained why:

“When Google was a relatively unknown 80-person start-up, the company tested Stanford students on how well they could use Google to find which country won the most gold medals in the 1994 Olympics. The result: students would sit in front of the Google screen for 15 seconds, 30 seconds, 45 seconds, a minute…”

When Marissa intervened and asked why they were waiting so long to perform a search, most people said “I’m waiting for the rest of it”. The students were clearly waiting for busier more flashy website and it was never coming.

So what did Google do to counteract this issue? No, they didn’t make it flashier, nor did they add a lot of extra content. No, it was something so simple, most people probably wouldn’t have thought about…

They put a copyright notice at the bottom of the page! Yes, that simple!

It’s not there for legal reasons,” Mayer said. “It’s there as punctuation. That’s it. (It tells the searcher) ‘Nothing else is coming; please start searching now.'”

That’s debatably the most innovative idea to come out of Google to date!

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