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This week, the search engine world saw three main events happen. The highly anticipated Cuil engine was released. Microsoft Asia published a research paper promoting BrowserRank, a new method they believe will challenge Google’s supremacy. Finally we take a look at the trillion unique URLs mark Google hit, and how this event stole (some of) the show. The Cuil search engine’s fast rise…and fall: Cuil (pronounced “cool”) was launched after months of teasing and rumors on the blogosphere. The company was founded by three former Google employees, experts in search technology. Press releases from the company had declared the engine’s index was the biggest, and the technology would make it a Google-killer. Unfortunately, the great buildup only led to a greater letdown when the consumers tried the engine out. Cuil is stranded with two problems, its popularity and the failure to deliver on its promises. Many blogs and forums were eager to test the search engine. When it was launched, millions of people jammed the servers and Cuil was rapidly offline. In addition to this, the ones who had the opportunity to test the engine were greatly disappointed. It was not the Google-killer they had hopped for, it was worst. Popular keywords (Obama, Iphone or Dark Knight) do not lead to more recent and appropriate pages. On top, Cuil only registered one domaine name (!) the cuil.com is the only website belonging to the company. Not only is their brand image in danger, the brand’s integrity is also at risk (cybersquatting). Finally, the images displayed next to a result are sometimes wrong and lead to humorous situations. Bloggers are playing with these results. Can you find more? Sources : http://www.cuil.com/info/news_press/ http://www.seomoz.org/blog/comparing-search-engine-performance-how-does-cuil l-stack-up-to-google-yahoo-live-ask http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/07/29/how-to-lose-your-cuil-20-seconds-after-launch/ http://blogoscoped.com/archive/2008-07-30-n88.html http://protectiondesmarques.info/2008/07/29/la-strategie-de-noms- de-domaine-du-nouveau-moteur-de-recherche-cuil/ (FR) BrowserRank, Microsoft’s new weapon: Last weekend in Singapore, Microsoft Asia published a research paper declaring they had discovered a better way to rank results, based on the users’ time spent on a page rather than the number of links pointing to it (ie. Google’s PageRank). The R&D team in Redmond even considers PageRank as a system easily duped by link farms, and publicises BrowserRank as fool proof to these web nuisances. Bloggers defended the search giant from criticism on PageRank and detail how Google uses more than 200 criteria in its algorithm to determine a pages ranking. However they reacted positively to this announcement, and encourage Microsoft to jumpstart the competition with Google, because in the end, the final consumers are the one that benefit from it. Sources : http://www.searchnewz.com/topstory/news/sn-2-20080730 MicrosoftTalksaboutBrowseRankBeyondPageRank.html http://onlineever.wordpress.com/2008/07/26/microsoft-browserrank-versus -google-pagerank/ http://arnoldit.com/wordpress/2008/07/26/microsofts-browser-rank/ Google came across a trillion URLs: The official Google blog was proud to announce they had reached the trillion detected unique URLs across the web. This landmark is impressive but the authors of the post had a hard time explaining it clearly. The first paragraph (voluntarily?) mixes information on the size of the web, and the size of Google’s index. As a result some bloggers were confused and published articles celebrating the size of the web or of Page and Brin’s company’s index… This proclamation coincided with the launch of Cuil and its “index three times bigger than competitors”. Numerous blogs reported both news in the same article, therefore diminishing Cuil’s buzz. The parallel was inevitable and Google’s perceived index size was compared to Cuil’s mere 120 billion pages. In the end, Google was on top of the news this week on three different levels. First of all the company preserves the reputation of technological expertise. It then is compared to the failed Cuil who missed its launch. Finally Microsoft’s research paper gives the bloggers an opportunity to defend the Mountain View corporation and remind us Google spends billions of dollars in R&D to optimise its search engine. Sources : http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/07/we-knew-web-was-big.html http://www.techcrunch.com/2008/07/25/googles-misleading-blog-post -on-the-size-of-the-web/
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