In 2011, Andrew Rhodes wrote a paper entitled, Can Prominence Matter Even in an Almost Frictionless Market? He models consumer behaviour in frictionless markets and the role of search engines and their paid placement on the search results page. I have had a look at the article because I am the target of one of Lewisham Labour’s candidates for Mayor’s google ad-campaign. I look at what Rhodes did, and ask a couple of questions about how applicable his model and assumptions are.
Tag Archives: search
The EU’s anti-monopoly probe into Google is explored in an article in the Guardian. The Commission have decided to re-open it. The enquiry has been focused on search, but been given greater relevance by the consumer move to phones. Unlike Microsoft in the last century, Google have engaged with the Commission while defending their business model, which is to build queries that users want. The allegation is that they prefer their own property to that of others. The Commission was about to publish a settlement but Google’s competitors, including Microsoft and the French & German governments objected.
Just some times I come across a piece of research which my search engines find hard to help me with. Since Google, they all seem to use in-list based sorting algorithms. Some resources, such as the EU’s web complex don’t seem to have enough sites pointing at it for this to be a wisdom of crowds solution and their own search engine doesn’t seem to help me either. You’d think that the various News organisation feeds that specialise might issue permalink based pointers but querying the EU site remains hard.
In March, I attended the EU’s “Future of the Internet” conference. This was a meeting of Europe’s top computer scientists from both business and academia, planned to discuss future research and development. The meeting was jointly convened by the rotating Presidency (the Government of Slovenia) and the Commission, and held at Lake Bled. I attended a number of sessions dealing with technical, societal and economic issues together with the state of research in the European Union. The original articles were written from notes taken at the time, posted the following week and back dated to the approximate time the speech was given; they were copied across to this ominbus blog in July 2016. It is now, really quite long. The sessions included, Dr Ziga Turk, who spoke of enlargement and the 5th freedom, Dutton on Privacy, Trust and economies of scale, Wyckoff Lovink, Johansen , Vasconcelos in a panel on economics and Heuser, Grégoire, Uddenfeldt , Nathan , Hourcade on the development of technology in Europe, and speakers from the US and Japan.
I have been discussing the efficacy of our internal search tools and how hard it is to find stuff, and to be honest, assumed that it was the crapness that most users accuse their IT colleagues of. However a colleague, Bernard Horan recommended that I read “Searching the Workplace Web“, which suggests a different answer. Searching the Workplace Web argues that intranet’s are different from the internet and that more flexible, and different search algorithms are required to search an intranet; the most successful internet search algorithms are not necessarily going to work well on an intranet.
I wrote about del.icio.us here & here, on my sun/oracle blog. I note that it’s a social network for bookmarking, it allows searches on the basis of crowd sourced tags, and allows friends to watch out for interesting content for each other. It also posts in RSS.
I dropped in see Tom Clark at the Sun Library stand, who was demonstrating “Grokker” (released by Groxis (nice favicon)), a search visualisation package that the library staff have put in front of some of their collections. He ran a couple of queries which just showed how lazy “page rank” has made us. Grokker presents its findings in a series of concentric circles. We discussed the fact that colour and size should be significant, otherwise, its pretty much an explorer hierarchy using encapsulated circles, rather than the expanding/contracting explorer. Its quite dramatic