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Book: The Search by John Battelle
Subtitle: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture
Here’s the scoop: I really was excited when this came out. I purchased it, and waited a long time, and was ultimately quite pleased with the read. I think I’ve re-read most every single piece of google news SOMEWHERE in the last 2 years, so I wasn’t too psyched about reading more about the big G, but it was still quite interesting.
Google is a large beast of a company that has “crossed the chasm” by evolving in as short a period of time as any company in history. They have not experienced much failure as a company and have demonstrated and acheived tremendous growth. They will have to make difficult decisions regarding new media in the future. Google tries to base decisions on artificial intelligence and technology with less demonstration of human intervention this being a fundamental difference between them and their seemingly largest competitor Yahoo who views themselves as a media company. Validation that Google is branded as Search since the time they became the verb for it.
-Search business models
Quotes from dogeared pages:
“The search all starts with you: your query, your intent – the desire to get an answer, find a site, or learn something new. Intent drives searcch…”
“Arguably, there is no greater act of creativity than the formation of a good question, and every day the wired world asks hundreds of millions of questions via search.”
Brilliance on the key distinction between Google and Yahoo:
Yahoo is far more willing to have overt editorial and commercial agendas, and to let humans intervene in search results so as to create media that suppports those agendas. Google, on the other hand, is repelled by the idea of ecoming a content or editorially driven company.
Wonder how AOL will effect that, if at all.
I really enjoyed reading about the interpretation of how Google is a technology company and Yahoo is a media company. This point shined through and brought me validation on why I have preferred Yahoo at times since G had become the media darling.
-Bill Gross selling vertical search distribution to the point where he could become his own destination
-Reading someone else’s account of the dreaded “florida update”
Application to SEO:
If you don’t understand history, you are bound to repeat it’s mistakes. The history of Google and other topics in this book are fundemental to understanding SEO. Either you were there and it was entertaining (for me about half the book), or it’s downright enlightening because you weren’t.