Monday, February 23, 2009

A single search on Google can involve 1000 machines.

Ever wonder how Google is able to bring you search results so quick. Well for years now Google has kept many of its secrets under wraps locked up in their Google vault. Recently though Jeff Dean gave a keynote talk at ESDM 2009.

According to Dean, a typical Google search consumes the processing power of 1000 machines. He also stated that in that 10 years the number of Google searches has gone up by x1000. Dean also claimed that Google has brought their search query time down to 200ms, 10 years ago they were running around 1000ms. The largest growth though can be found in the update latency of Google’s website Crawlers. They have dropped by a staggering x10000, which has reduced the crawler update speed from several months to now just a couple of minutes.

Dean went on to say that the improvements are a result of switching the holding indexes to now being completely in memory. The result is that it takes thousands of machines to process a search query, but it has made near instantaneous searches possible.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Top 10 Positive Factors of Google's Search Engine

Everybody who uses the internet these days has definitely used a search engine. Whether it be Google, Yahoo, Ask Jeeves, or any other site, a search engine is the best and quickest way to find anything on the internet. And here is a list of the top 10 positive factors:

Keyword Use in Title Tag - this is placing the targeted search word or phrase in the title tag of of the web page's HTML header.

Keyword Use in Body Text - Using the targeted search term in the visible HTML of the text.

Anchor Text of Inbound Link - Helps peple know just exactly what your site is about.

Global Link Popularity of Site - The overall link weight/authority as measured by links from any and all sites across the web (both link quality and quantity).

Age of Site - Not the date of the original registration of the domain, but rather the launch of indexable content seen by the search engines.

Link Popularity of the Site's Internal Link Structure - This refers to the number and importance of internal links pointing to the target page.

Topical Relevance of Inbound Links to Site - The subject-specific relationshib between the site/pages linking to the target page and the target keyword.

Link Popularity of Site in Topical Community - The link weight/authority of the target website amongst its topical peers in the online world.

Global Link Popularity of Linking Site - the popularity of the site in countries spanning the entire globe.

Topical Relationship of Linking Page - Important due to the fact that it helps with the ranking of other pages.

There you have it, the top 10 positive factors of Google's search engine. For more information on the topic go to

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Recent Plane Crashed On Autopilot

PlaneMost peopel have no doubt heard of the tragic plane crash that happened a few days ago. Stories have appeard all over the internet, nes, papers, and all other forms of media. While there are many factors that could attribute to the crash, one major aspect is that the plane was on autopilot just before it went down.

According to the airline instructions and federal guidelines, a pilot should not engage the autopilot feature while flying through bad weather, an ice storm in this case. If the ice is bad enough, the pi;ots are required to shut off autopilot and fly the plane manually. Steve Chealander of the National Transportation Safety Board, commented that a pilot "should be able to sense problems sooner in manual mode than the autopilot can sense it." The plane was automatically switched to manual mode just before it fell from the sky.

Chealander described the flights chaotic last moments before the crash retrieved from the planes flight recorder. The plane pitched upwards at an angle of 31 degrees, then down at 45 degrees followed by a roll left at 46 degrees and finished when it shot right at 105 degrees which is 15 degrees beyond vertical. While also inspecting radar, the plan was revealed to have dropped from an altitude of 1800 feet to an altitude of 1000 feet in just 5 seconds which would inflict g-forces on the crew and passengers up to twice as much as being on the ground. After all this trauma the plane finally came down belly first on top of a house killing all 49 people on board as well as 1 person on the ground.

The cause of the crash has been determined to be significant ice build up on the wings and windshield which is consistent with reports from various other planes. The strange thing is that the plane's deicing mechanism was activated just 11 minuets after takeoff and was on the entire duration of the flight. Indicator lights showed that everything was wrking normally the whole time as were both engines.

During cleanup, authorities had found remains of 15 passengers. Crews raced in a mad rush to cleanup the remains before an impending storm approached. Cleanup efforts were stated to be at full foce despite weather conditions. It has been estimated that the cleanup could take as much as 4 days but will not waver until the job is done.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Social Networking Giants: Myspace Not Top Dog?

Social Networking SitesSocial networking sites are everywhere these days and its pretty much impossible to not be apart of at least one. No matter how much you say you hate them you undoubtably will be dragged into one because, lets face it, everyone you know has one and they will do their best to try and get you one, or in my case, forget asking you all together and make you one anyway.

In the magical world of social networking, three sites reign supreme above all else: Twitter, Facebook, and, of course, Myspace. These sites completley revolutionized how we talk with friends, interact with new people, and display ourselves to the world.

Until recently, Myspace had been the undeniable leader in the market. However, things have taken a recent turn away from Myspace's favor. Myspace is now holding the number two spoot as the top spot has been conqured by Facebook with Twitter quickly closing the gap in third place. Myspace, which used to be the hottest social netwrking site around, has become pretty flat as of late with its content, functions, and all around performance. Facebook, which recently turned five years old, has surged past rival Myspace in nearly every way.

Most people probaly can’t believe that their beloved Facebook was receiving a tremendous amount of bad press by this time last year saying the site had “jumped the gun” but it now appears to be just the opposite.

In order for a social networking site to work, they need to have a good stream of activity in their user base. What that means is they need a lot of time and visits from each unique visitor. In these categories, Facebook has excelled while Myspace has remained stagnant or fallen off and with the new hot rising site Twitter quickly climbing the ranks.

Social networking sites are, indeed, everywhere and you would be hardpressed not to be apart of one or to not know at least ten people that are apart of one. Facebook is now the top dog of the social networking scene with Myspace staying in a strong second. However, with Myspace’s trends in key areas lacking the same spice they used to have and with Twitter quickly growing stronger, Myspace may have more than just Facebook hovering over them.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Google Flags Entire Internet As Malware On Its Search Engine

Google Breaks Jan 31, 2009

On January 31 between 6:30 a.m PST and 7:25 a.m. PST Google's search engine began flagging every search result as malware with the message, "This site may harm your computer." The error was reported to be global.

Google quickly fixed the problem within 55 minutes of the problems arrival. They have also responded via the Google blog stating the problem occurred due to human error after a '/' was added to the list of websites that considers to be malware infected. Since / is in every website this means that the entire internet was flagged as malware.

Here is the official response from Mayer on Google's Blog

"If you did a Google search between 6:30 a.m. PST and 7:25 a.m. PST this morning, you likely saw that the message “This site may harm your computer” accompanied each and every search result. This was clearly an error, and we are very sorry for the inconvenience caused to our users.

What happened? Very simply, human error. Google flags search results with the message “This site may harm your computer” if the site is known to install malicious software in the background or otherwise surreptitiously. We do this to protect our users against visiting sites that could harm their computers. We work with a non-profit called to get our list of URLs. StopBadware carefully researches each consumer complaint to decide fairly whether that URL belongs on the list. Since each case needs to be individually researched, this list is maintained by humans, not algorithms.

We periodically receive updates to that list and received one such update to release on the site this morning. Unfortunately (and here’s the human error), the URL of ‘/’ was mistakenly checked in as a value to the file and ‘/’ expands to all URLs. Fortunately, our on-call site reliability team found the problem quickly and reverted the file. Since we push these updates in a staggered and rolling fashion, the errors began appearing between 6:27 a.m. and 6:40 a.m. and began disappearing between 7:10 and 7:25 a.m., so the duration of the problem for any particular user was approximately 40 minutes.

Thanks to our team for their quick work in finding this. And again, our apologies to any of you who were inconvenienced this morning, and to site owners whose pages were incorrectly labeled. We will carefully investigate this incident and put more robust file checks in place to prevent it from happening again.

Thanks for your understanding.

Posted by Marissa Mayer, VP, Search Products & User Experience"