Quarter Life Crisis

The world according to Sven-S. Porst

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Blog noise

577 words

Our friends at The Register seem to quite like the concept of blog noise on search engines. While I may be biased on the topic, judging from my (occasionally excessive) use of Google blogs never got in the way of more adequate search results yet. In fact, I discovered very good bits of information on blogs, so I wouldn't want to leave them out. In addition their recent article mentions the problem of people publishing lists – a much more real problem in my experience.

If, at the end of the day, 'blog-noise' really were a problem, I'd say it's not the blogs at fault but the search engine that puts inadequate web pages towards the top of its search results because they are in widely linked blogs. It's usually easy for a human to tell whether a web page listed in the search results is helpful or not. Whether or not the page in question is part of a blog doesn't matter for that assessment. If search engines can't make that distinction, they may want to improve their algorithms...

Hm, I just let analog run through our web server logs to see my inadequate impact on Google searches. I do feel a bit guilty now, because I have almost 10 people per day hitting this blog with the search term quarter life crisis. A quick check at Google reveals that I am in fact the number one search result for quarter life crisis these days. That's quite silly, I suppose, as there seems to be a book by the same name, which is more likely what people will be looking for. On the other hand, the way Google rank their pages isn't exactly my responsibility. Teoma seems to do a bit better, not having me within their first ten hits – but a some other blogs instead.

Searching for this word is quite funny. There seems to be (have been?) a site linking to sites on the topic with the lovely subtitle another product of misanthropy and boredom, a band by that name, another blog, an article in the Warwick Boar, Warwick's student 'news'paper (it's a small world, isn't it?) and about 200000 other results.

Apart from that I don't get too many hits from Google on specific search terms. Most people ending up at my site will have searched for band or film names. Those searching for Raveonettes Berlin will probably have been disappointed. Those words have only been on the same archive page, not in the same post. Having a per-post archive is probably more Google friendly, but Google could try to wise up a little, and try to interpret those trackback infos within the page and figure out what belongs together, as for Feedster-esque results. It's not like we didn't give them any clues. On the other hand, those searching for Loftarasa video shouldn't have been too unhappy with my post which was about the 17th search result. And so on.

Talking of analog. I am not really happy with that program. While it produces all kinds of statistics, most of them are fairly useless to me. Isn't there a tool that will without a lot of tweaking give me the information I want without displaying all the less significant bits? Haha, I'm not being very specific here. I'll just assume that you know how meaningless the numbers analog throws back at you can be.

June 12, 2003, 17:11


Comment by Tabs: User icon

Hi, just wanted to add that for those actually looking for quarter life crisis information I found this site a big help, http://getalife.jarofworms.com real nice, funny, not condecending at all. Good luck guys!

November 12, 2004, 2:27

Comment by Jelisse: User icon

I appreciate that you keep this blog going and allow comments. To me feedback is an interesting part of a blog.

August 16, 2005, 3:38

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