imperfect google

as i’ve argued before, google’s algorithm is imperfect.. here’s another discussion of its down side.

the search results as well as the news results (since on their faq page they said the news follows the search algorithm closely) are ranked by page ranks.

PAGE RANK DEFINED: Condensed version
PageRank relies on the uniquely democratic nature of the web by using its vast link structure as an indicator of an individual page’s value. In essence, Google interprets a link from page A to page B as a vote, by page A, for page B. But, Google looks at more than the sheer volume of votes, or links a page receives; it also analyzes the page that casts the vote. Votes cast by pages that are themselves “important” weigh more heavily and help to make other pages “important.”

if links are “votes” by google’s algorithm, the author brought up an interesting point of distinguishing positive vote from negative vote to improve the algorithm. obviously not every time you link someone is to praise them.

google’s popularity oriented algorithm has caused other problems. but when it’s apparently helping to spread China’s one-sided tightly controlled news source, it can’t be good.

10 thoughts on “imperfect google

  1. I agree with you on this one dodo. The system is imperfect. You see what they want you to see, not exactly what YOU want to see. Lately I’ve been having issues with google and not being able to find sites that I find “helpful” I get the most odd results…

  2. I wish I had the brain power to understand what you just explained in your post so that I could respond with an intelligent comment… but I don’t lol However, I’m in the process of switching my major from English to Computer Science, so maybe I will have a response soon. You’re gonna hafta tutor me, Dodo 😀

      1. Well, I really haven’t enjoyed English as much as I expected…. On the other hand, I can’t keep myself off the computer… so i found it an appropriate trade off 🙂 I think it would be nice to actually ENJOY what I’m studying in school 😀 hehe

        1. That’s a good point, but usually every time you link your site to pages that are located on other sites it’s because this other sites contains more information related to the topic you are talking about, including pages we talk bad about.

          It’s like talking about Michael Jackson, some might say good things about him and others might say bad things, in the end what happens is that he is getting more popular all the time even when he gets bad comments.

          Probably the only reason when a link from page A to page B shouldn’t help increase it’s rank is when the information from page A has nothing to do with the information on page B, but that’s already cover as part of the PageRank algorithm.

          1. well if you read the link.. the exact algorithm is promoting the one-sided tightly controlled media in china. it now has political ill effects.

          2. actually the simliar political generlization toward popular opinions is also a side effects of google in US. but when we are talking about chinese media, it’s more severe only because the media in china is controlled by the central government and there is no freedom of speech. many blogs of foreigners who live in china or news source from more free area like hongkong tend to view the politics in china more objectively. unfortunately they will not show up in google news. because as that post pointed out, you are required to link xinhua. the sheer amout of linkage is enough bring xinhua to the top on google news. what you said about page rank is correct.. but when it’s mixed with china’s internet censorship and control. the results is just not pretty.

  3. I guess you are right Dodo, I didn’t read the discussion (completely) when I made that comment, I just did (today) although it doesn’t really surprise me, because even in countries where the communism is not a form of government (you were saying that the US has the same problem in a lower level, but there are others…) the information is manipulated not only on the Internet but in other news sources.
    Changing the Google’s system to obtain truly relevant news is not as simple as changing an algorithm especially when this involves political matters.

    Luis de la Maza.

    1. yes i agree. changing algorithm alone will probably not be enough. the thing google is changing the world in a way. last time i heard the word “google” is as popular as the word “coke” now. so everyone wants to get a piece. and it’s mandating the political culture online whether you realize it or not.

  4. Hey Dodo! You are right about the whole Google sytem, I dont really like using it anyway. 🙂

    You have a really cute site here. I like it alot Check out mine and tell me what you think. xP

    Well I really must go, I shouldnt be online. x)

    – Jade

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