Google launches biggest revamp in history (and the changes may hurt some websites.... )Google launches biggest revamp in history (and the changes may hurt some websites.... )

Google has just launched one of the biggest revamps of its search engine in history today, but the changes, which Google says will provide search results that are 70 per cent fresher than the current algorithm, could also negatively affect some websites.

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Google's new indexing system, "Caffeine"

Google's new indexing system, dubbed "Caffeine", is faster - processing hundreds of thousands of pages in parallel every second - and takes up nearly 100 million gigabytes of storage in one database, and it will provide the largest selection of web content ever offered on Google.

However some websites that rely heavily on Google search referrals might see their traffic suffer as the changes could result in them being relegated further down the search rankings.

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"Freshness is becoming critical"....

Google fellow and 20-year search veteran Amit Singhal said that, while there might be some losers, the primary goal was to improve the user experience.

"As the web is moving forward, freshness is becoming critical and we have worked a lot on this. Starting tomorrow, our users will see 70 per cent fresher results in Google's search results," he said. "In our world, users come first and, with Caffeine, we will observe our user search experience getting much better, much fresher."

Singhal says search must stay 'fresh' and said Caffeine was much bigger than the hundreds of other changes the search giant makes to its algorithm every year.

Alan Eustace, Google's senior vice-president and head of all its engineers, described the changes as "huge".

Google switched on "Caffeine" for a limited number of beta testers last year but from today it will be rolled out across all of its data centers. Search engine optimization (SEO) gurus have been working frantically to figure out the new system and how best to game it to their advantage.


"Focus is on indexing new content within minutes of it being published"....

Previously, new web pages were only added to Google's search results after Google had crawled the web for various terms and updated its indexes. Now, the focus is on indexing new content within minutes of it being published.

Google said it did not expect a publisher backlash to the changes but admitted some pages would be pushed to the top of search results based on the fact that they were newer, while some older pages would be pushed down. Users would begin to notice changes beginning today but these would be more pronounced over time.

Google dominates the online search business worldwide, and in Australia it supplies more than 90 per cent of searches made - 87.8 per cent through the address and 5 per cent through Microsoft's search engine "Bing" has made inroads in some markets and is reported to have captured 3.2 per cent of Australian searches in its first year since launch, (according to Hitwise's June 5 figures).