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Thursday, September 13, 2007

Pattern Recognition

posted by on September 13 at 13:15 PM

Google is just the search tool bar for Wikipedia.

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Not true, last I checked. Wikipedia's search function sucks ass, unlike Google's.

Posted by christopher | September 13, 2007 1:20 PM

@1 - I think that's his point. You use Google to find what you're looking for on Wikipedia.

That said, I actually use the Wikipedia search toolbar when I'm looking for things on Wikipedia.

Posted by Levislade | September 13, 2007 1:24 PM

Ah, I gets it. A lot of times when you google something, wikipedia results are high on the list. I've gotten at stuff that way, too.

Posted by christopher | September 13, 2007 1:26 PM

how does wikipedia have such a monopoly on google bombing

Posted by vooodooo84 | September 13, 2007 1:27 PM

@4: Because everybody links to Wikipedia.

Posted by Chris | September 13, 2007 1:34 PM

i thought this was a william gibson novel..

Posted by SeMe | September 13, 2007 1:34 PM

because wikipedia links to itself on all of its pages, many of which are the most popular pages on teh 'nets for particular topics...

Posted by NaFun | September 13, 2007 1:40 PM

Lot of smack talked about wikipedia, but it is still very useful. Probably next to useless for researching living individuals with celebrity or political or commercial interests, and several other subjects for similar reasons. But for checking out cool science or history info? Pretty good. Particularly when there are references cited so you can go confirm the info on your own.

Posted by christopher | September 13, 2007 1:44 PM

And the fact that I of little authority on anything have writen literally dozens and dozens of articles on that site doesn't scare you?

Posted by Angry Andrew | September 13, 2007 1:48 PM

#9: It's still better than the other 99 of the top 100 search results (people selling crap).

Posted by jamier | September 13, 2007 2:02 PM

Oh? Did Google break up with imdb?

Posted by mattro2.0 | September 13, 2007 2:15 PM

Yes, that is what "inurl:wikipedia" is for.

Posted by anon | September 13, 2007 2:27 PM

Josh, I think it's fairer to say that Wikipedia is just a content-provider for Google. When I first realized how often Wikipedia scored high on a Google search, I poked around and discovered that Google has given Wikipedia money, maybe for servers. Not that it isn't completely legitimate, but if you're trying to identify which is the tail and which is the dog, I'd say Google says bow wow wow.

Posted by Randy | September 13, 2007 2:43 PM

@7 Google's algorithm *probably* doesn't involve the 'popularity' of its site (at least, not the visits), nor would linking to oneself upgrade a crummy site.

From what they teach me about computer science at my school, outlinks hurt your 'reputation', so the more outlinks you have the lower your influence on the algorithm. Basically, typical wikipedia articles, which often have 100's of outlinks, would need a jillion bazillion in-links to make up for it. But they do indeed all have a jillion bazillion in-links. So it's made up for.

@5 has it exactly right.

Posted by john | September 13, 2007 3:48 PM


Posted by Amelia | September 13, 2007 3:57 PM

@15 I think that should be Apophenia.

Posted by Randy | September 13, 2007 4:38 PM

On the other hand, if Google pumps out the Encyclopedia Dramatica as one of your first four results, then you /know/ you're in trouble.

Posted by brent | September 13, 2007 4:42 PM

@11 is owned by :D

Posted by Katelyn | September 13, 2007 4:44 PM

It's at the top I think because of the heavy linking (as mentioned above), the density of appearance of the target word in seemingly meaningful context (i.e. not just repetition or garbage surrounding it), the lack of links to sites black or greylisted by google (because editors are generally merciless about deleted commercial links), and probably because other terms searched for along with said word also tend to show up in the articles (but I'm only guessing at their algorithms).

Posted by kinaidos | September 13, 2007 5:00 PM

Block Wikipedia in Google using Firefox and the CustomizeGoogle extension.

Posted by Oblomov | September 13, 2007 7:01 PM

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