A search engine is a search engine is a search engine, so thought the majority of companies until Google came alone. The current darling of the stock market is not standing still either, the next generation of its search engine is in beta and you can test it now.
Codenamed ‘Bigdaddy’, it comes with some impressive claims including faster, wider reaching, larger and more stable searches, greater spam filtering and major infrastructure improvements. This last point has even lead to the company claiming Bigdaddy will function at 100 per cent uptime, a remarkable statement.
Nattering on his blog in a rather disturbing and schizophrenic manner, Matt Cutts – the company’s Chief Search Engineer – nevertheless made some interesting points about the company’s newest baby:
Q: Do you expect this to become the default source of web results? How long will it take?
A: Yes, I do expect Bigdaddy to become the default source of web results. The length of the transition will depend on lots of different issues. Right now I’m guessing 1-2 months, but if I find out more specifics I’ll let you know.
Q: Is there specific types of feedback that you want?
A: We’d like to get general quality feedback. For example, this data center lays the groundwork for better canonicalization, although most of that will follow down the road. But some improvements are already visible with site: searches. The site: operator now returns more intuitive results (this is actually live at all data centers now).
Q: What else can you tell me about Bigdaddy?
A: In my opinion, this data center improves in several of the ways that you’d measure a search engine. But for now, the main feedback we’re looking for is just general quality and canonicalization.
Q: Will this data center make me coffee? Is it the solution to all possible issues ever?
A: No. No data center will make 100% of people happy. For every url that moves into the top 10, another url moves out. And the changes on Bigdaddy are relatively subtle (less ranking changes and more infrastructure changes). Most of the changes are under the hood, and this infrastructure prepares the framework for future improvements throughout the year. If you see a webspam or quality issue, let us know so that we can work on it.
Disturbing mental health issues aside, Cutts’ duality makes Bigdaddy sound an extremely promising development. Two new data centres have been setup solely to deploy it and Google is looking to garner feedback immediately. Like all Google products and services, the company says it will go through various beta stages slowly becoming more visible to the general public as bugs are sorted out. If curiosity kills you in a feline like manner, however, you can jump straight in and test it here and here
Oh, and the name. Apparently ‘Bigdaddy’ comes from the nickname given to ‘JeffM’ (one of Cutt’s webmasters) by his kids and isn’t anything to do with world domination... so It says…