Google fascinates me.
Somehow, despite gamers over the globe whining about how someone should patch Broken Sword 3, the top match for “Broken Sword 3 patch” is my review of it.
Google UK lists my Driving Test article as number four site, and the first with comments, so the article has become a mecca for people wanting to rant, rave and whine about their own experiences. Okay, so it’s hardly on par with Kottke’s Matrix thread, but it’s still interesting. Well, to me, anyway.
So, the first question is the social one. It’s a good example of how Google is fading away as the Blogs become more and more of the top matches. Sometimes that’s good, because if – for example – Mark Pilgrim’s essay on RSS becomes top match for the format, it provides a good introduction for developers trying to get to grips with the murk.
OTOH, My two year old whinging about failing my driving test due to excessive rain helps nobody.
My ‘That Which Is Relevant’ feature is somewhat circular in this regard. There are a couple of searches which I would not be highly matched for if I hadn’t been a low match last month, printed the exact phrase (as ‘incoming search for’) which Google then indexed on. My solution to this has been to only display searches that have lead here more than three times as of today.
So where’s the selling out? Well, I kind of feel guilty that people searching for driving lesson tips are being led here under false pretences, so I’d like to provide some more relevant links. So, I’m now supplying Google Adsense adverts on any articles/entries over three months old (The age thing is basically because anything recent should *be* relevant somehow, and I’m not really looking to make real money out of this (though it would be nice) and displaying adverts on new entries seems over-commercial).
This is mostly a trial balloon, really. If it works, it’ll stay. If I get accused of being a money-grabbing commercial git, I’ll probably try to rejustify it.