Now what, Steve? Google just introduced a pair of significant changes to its search product, something Steve Ballmer recently said it couldn’t do because it’s got too darn much market share.
As I suggested in my earlier post on Ballmer’s comments, its leader’s complacency explains why Microsoft has been allowed to float in a bath of its own mediocrity for so long.
Meanwhile, Google has modified its algorithm so that its search engine can guess at the larger context of a search. The Google blog had a boring physics example of how this works, but I felt like searching on “professional wrestling” instead.
Below the first set of search results, Google suggests a few other terms I might have intended. Some were obvious choices that included the word “wrestling” — like “professional wrestling moves,” “obsessed with wrestling” and “professional wrestling death.” But it also had some suggestions that didn’t include the word “wrestling,” like “wwe tour” and “tna” (for total nonstop action, you pervs).
The other change is that it’s including longer snippets below individual results for searches involving longer terms. You know there’s sure to be some copyright holders whining about infringement because they don’t realize that being more visible in search results will actually result in more exposure and ultimately more page views.
But once again, the real loser is Microsoft. Even Steve Wozniak is in better shape at this point.