Discussion:
[OT] Google search
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Simon Clubley
2024-05-16 12:17:42 UTC
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Consider, instead, Google search. If you go to `google.com`,
you actually get a pretty simple interface: right now, for me,
it's just the Google logo, a text box, and a few buttons. I
enter my search term into the text box and click "Google Search"
and off I go. But! When I click that button, I am one of many
millions of users in that same second simultaneously clicking
that button; in order to serve all of those users
simultaneously, there is an enormous pile of resources sitting
behind that simple web page that lets it scale. And when I
say enormous, I mean enormous: O(10^6) individual servers with
O(10^7) CPUs and many petabytes of RAM total, exabytes of
stable storabe, and terrabits of network bandwidth all
connecting them, in a constellation of globally distributed
data centers often built to be near redundant, high-capacity
electricity sources (i.e., built near a dam, say).
If Google search gets any worse, that problem will end up solving
itself as people stop using it.

For goodness sake, a Russian search engine (Yandex) currently gives
me far higher quality search results for a number of things than
Google currently does.

I try Google first, and then try Yandex second if I don't find it on Google.

At the rate things are going, that order of searching is going to be
reversed as over the last few years Google search results have turned
from specific high-quality results into utter generic crap.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Dan Cross
2024-05-16 14:26:49 UTC
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Post by Simon Clubley
Consider, instead, Google search. If you go to `google.com`,
you actually get a pretty simple interface: right now, for me,
it's just the Google logo, a text box, and a few buttons. I
enter my search term into the text box and click "Google Search"
and off I go. But! When I click that button, I am one of many
millions of users in that same second simultaneously clicking
that button; in order to serve all of those users
simultaneously, there is an enormous pile of resources sitting
behind that simple web page that lets it scale. And when I
say enormous, I mean enormous: O(10^6) individual servers with
O(10^7) CPUs and many petabytes of RAM total, exabytes of
stable storabe, and terrabits of network bandwidth all
connecting them, in a constellation of globally distributed
data centers often built to be near redundant, high-capacity
electricity sources (i.e., built near a dam, say).
If Google search gets any worse, that problem will end up solving
itself as people stop using it.
For goodness sake, a Russian search engine (Yandex) currently gives
me far higher quality search results for a number of things than
Google currently does.
I try Google first, and then try Yandex second if I don't find it on Google.
At the rate things are going, that order of searching is going to be
reversed as over the last few years Google search results have turned
from specific high-quality results into utter generic crap.
This may be true, but it very much misses the forest for the
trees. Do you think that Yandex, as a service, is administered
is very much different in how it scales and how the
infrastructure is built out? Or Azure, Meta, AWS, etc? Ali
Baba?

It's all well and good to gripe over the state of "things these
days" over a beer or two. It's another thing entirely to ignore
the reality of modern systems and their scale requirements and
chalk it all up to people just not knowing what they're doing.

- Dan C.
John Dallman
2024-05-16 16:48:00 UTC
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Post by Simon Clubley
At the rate things are going, that order of searching is going to be
reversed as over the last few years Google search results have
turned from specific high-quality results into utter generic crap.
Google.com or .co.uk? I'm finding .co.uk is pretty decent, at least for
the present.

John
Simon Clubley
2024-05-16 18:20:48 UTC
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Post by John Dallman
Post by Simon Clubley
At the rate things are going, that order of searching is going to be
reversed as over the last few years Google search results have
turned from specific high-quality results into utter generic crap.
Google.com or .co.uk? I'm finding .co.uk is pretty decent, at least for
the present.
.co.uk.

I suppose it depends on the kind of thing you are looking for.

For technical examples, one issue is that way too often I get third-party
pages talking about standards/specifications instead of the standards or
specifications themselves.

For one recent non-work example, I was looking for some latest
examples of Sci-Fi short films that I had not yet seen.

[This is longer than I intended sorry, but it's a really good example of
something popular that Google covers very poorly.]

For some background, there is an incredibly talented large community
of people who produce short films on various themes and then post them
to Youtube for everyone to watch for free. They are produced on a small
budget, but are produced to high standards, and are far more creative
than the mainstream junk you see these days. For examples, see Laboratory
Conditions, Oceanus, etc, and the suggested viewing list alongside them:





[WARNING: you may not like the subject matter in the second one, but it's
a good jumping off point to other shorts. What they all have in common is
that they expose you to new storylines you don't see in mainstream films.]

The DUST channel contains a good selection of these but there are many
others, far too many to keep track of other than by searching. I keep
getting utter junk back from Google or old very popular shorts I have
already seen.

I mention all this, because given just how massive this whole shorts
community/culture is, I would have thought it would be a _lot_ easier
to find new shorts via Google than it currently is.

It makes me wonder what else Google is making an utter mess-up of.

Simon.
--
Simon Clubley, ***@remove_me.eisner.decus.org-Earth.UFP
Walking destinations on a map are further away than they appear.
Chris Townley
2024-05-16 18:25:22 UTC
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Post by Simon Clubley
It makes me wonder what else Google is making an utter mess-up of.
Simon.
I quite like Google
--
Chris
Chris Townley
2024-05-16 18:23:43 UTC
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Post by John Dallman
Post by Simon Clubley
At the rate things are going, that order of searching is going to be
reversed as over the last few years Google search results have
turned from specific high-quality results into utter generic crap.
Google.com or .co.uk? I'm finding .co.uk is pretty decent, at least for
the present.
John
As with any search engine, a lot depends on what you put in!

Better than searching the VSI forum. Everything seems to be common to be
used as a search term ;(
--
Chris
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