Way back, in the late 1990’s, I was still learning about what the internet had to offer. I had just recently had my first high speed internet (DSL) hooked up and was blazing through the pages at a whopping 1Mbps.
I decided, much like many other people, that I wanted a personal web page. There were quite a few free hosting sites available with rudimentary templates. I wanted to get my page into a search engine, which at the time was like pulling teeth for a non-technical person like I was. In order to find out how to do this I needed to search for the information using a variety of search sites. The results were terrible in most cases, and when I did find anything of value I discovered that I would need to pay to have my page listed. After a time I learned how to use meta tags and links to other sites to get some results but never learned html fully. I could manipulate existing code to some small degree which was somewhat helpful.
One boring day, while trying to search for some info on digital phones using Yahoo search, AltaVista, Lycos and Excite, I came across a link for Google Beta. Intrigued I decided to give it a go. To be extremely blunt, it was fantastic and impressed me immediately. I couldn’t believe how it seemed to know what I wanted to find within the first several links on page one. The most amazing thing to me was how it found pages from my site that were not linked from anywhere other than the hosting url. I decided to test out how it compared with the other search engines mentioned. I began by entering simple searches for current news stories, something that should show up in each at or near the top. Google was the only one that didn’t link to either Yahoo, MSN or Excite automatically. It returned results from local news sources if available. In other words, if I searched for news of a robbery in Montreal, the top result would be a Canadian news source rather than a linked source via an internet portal unless the top result was from a major portal. Yahoo never did this!
After several months of getting used to finding what I wanted faster, I learned another interesting trick when searching. Sometimes you want to go to one of those portals for info but using, say, Excite search wasn’t always easy to find content hosted within. Using Google I could just search the term and add the portal. Bingo!
Of course, we all know now that we don’t need to add certain words with Google like “with” or “at” and it will know what we want, but it was new at the time.
Google search has been a huge part of internet development over the past 15 years and personally made my life much easier technologically speaking. I’ve used it to learn many things that would have otherwise taken much longer or been next to impossible. I’ve discovered things I would not have known anything about without its wonderful algorithms. Without it there would be no Google plus. Without Google Plus there might very well be no Techaeris.
Without Techaeris I would not have written this fluff editorial.
Photo Credit: Mortem Tuam Photography
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