The power of the big G
19/07/2010 I came across an article about a patent that Google has recently been granted, the ‘Reasonable Surfer Patent', and it has just about blown my mind. The clever G spiders that crawl and index the pages they find are more intelligent than most of us can comprehend; not only do the spiders see some webpages as better than others, they now apparently rate every individual link separately. However, I suspect they've actually been doing this since the patent was filed in 2004. Imagine they go around giving little gold stars to the latest-punch-news.html they find, the more gold stars a link has, the better it is. But what makes latest-punch-news.html good or bad?
The patent, granted on 11 May 2010, explains that more gold stars are to be given to those latest-punch-news.html that are more likely to be clicked on by any ‘reasonable surfer'. A whole host of factors come in to play but of course Google haven't gone so far as to say how it all works. Spiders may be taking into consideration the position of the link on the page as well as whether it's in a list or in the body, the font size and colour, if there are too many navigational latest-punch-news.html on a page and if the linking pages are related in content. A reasonable surfer has more intelligence than a random surfer, which is the principle behind Google's PageRank.
PageRank works on a surfer continuously and randomly clicking on latest-punch-news.html. Websites with many, many latest-punch-news.html pointing towards it should be reached by the random surfer quicker than those which don't and are therefore given a higher PageRank. However, now the spiders have been back to school, PageRank doesn't appear to be so important on its own. What I'm certain of is that lots of authority latest-punch-news.html in a site will up the authority of the pages, therefore impacting on the PageRank number. It's enough to make you dizzy, huh!
Of course, Google may or may not be using lots of half inconceivable practices to create each search engine ranking page. Another patent filed, but not yet approved, speaks of using the data from where a user hovers the mouse. This I have difficulty accepting because it's so huge to grasp but it still makes sense; some people float the cursor where they are scanning and I have often seen my fiancé highlight body text as he reads it.
This, along with the many other continual updates the boffins at Google carry out, keeps us on our toes here at Punch. It is what makes my job super interesting and reinforces why I wanted to work at an SEO Agency. The more I learn, the more geeky I become. I'm just worried I'll start to dream about being a Google spider, Neo style, next!