Better Search Doesn’t Mean Beating Google from Saul Hansell at the New York Times does an excellent job breaking down the latest Google threat, or lack there of. A secret search engine named Wolfram Alpha is being designed now by Stephen Wolfram, a British mathematician.
Wolfram Alpha differs from Google in that it hopes to be an answer search engine, kind of like Ask.com’s goal. But the “Google killer” is not only within the technology, said Hansell. It is also in Google’s “success with users and advertisers” that made Google what it is today. Plus, as Hansell explains, Nova Spivack’s piece doesn’t take into account that Google’s old algorithm has come a long way. Any of you SEOs out there know all too well, that ranking well in Google in 2001 is a lot different then ranking well in 2009. Yes, Google has improved, adapted and grown. So looking at Google’s old algorithm, the old PageRank patent, and saying that your engine is better based on that paper, is like comparing apples to oranges.
Danny Sullivan briefly twittered his thoughts on this news, “but 1st 3 “factual” questions in techcrunch article? http://is.gd/mpDI google answered them just fine.” Meaning, Google did an excellent job on the same queries that was fed to TechCrunch’s piece on them.
But that being said, we won’t be able to make a true determination until Wolfram Alpha launches. The launch date is expected to be sometime in May.
Further articles and discussion on this topic can be found at Techmeme.