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Monday, April 26, 2004

Google Answers Unmasks Cloaking

Google Answers Researcher

“Aplus.Net admitted Friday that it had manipulated customer web sites to try and improve its ranking in the Google search engine, inserting “hidden links” that made it appear that more than 17,000 sites were linking to’s home page. The technique may have helped achieve a first-place Google ranking for the term “dedicated servers.” (...) used a technique known as “cloaking,” detecting when Google’s spider was visiting any of its customer sites, and then inserting HTML code with the terms “Web Hosting,” “Dedicated Servers” and “Domain Names,” all linked to customers who discovered the practice went public with their complaints on the Web Hosting Talk and on Google Answers online forums. After a story appeared on Web Host Industry Review, the company issued a press release saying the practice was being halted.”
– Richm, Admits Cloaking Customer Sites to Improve Search Ranking (Netcraft), April 25, 2004 [Via Gadgetopia]


“Schnitzelmitkartoffelsalat” (SMKS) is a German bogus word to test Google. It would translate to “steakwithpotatosalad” and (similar to the recent SERPs competition) is was chosen because it was unique at the time of its creation on November 15, 2002. As opposed to the singular phenomenon “Gyrosmitpommes” – yet another bogus word – Schnitzelmitkartoffelsalat is talked about in around 2,470 pages.

For more, see the Schnitzelmitkartoffelsalat information by Lars Kasper, and Wikipedia’s German entry on Google.

New Yahoo Messenger

The all new Yahoo Messenger (Beta) is out. This release includes:

When will there be Gchat, a Google chat application? Google could analyze URLs mentioned in chats to find new pages quickly, and adapt PageRank for often-mentioned sites.

The Superlibrarian

[Larry Page]

“Well, the Star Trek computer doesn’t seem that interesting. They ask it random questions, it thinks for a while. I think we can do better than that. You want to have a computer that is smart.

The Web is more of a superlibrarian. Imagine if you had a reference librarian who had all the knowledge of Google but could also answer instantly with all that knowledge. That would really change the world.”
– Larry Page, Interviewed by BusinessWeek Correspondent Ben Elgin: Google’s Goal: “Understand Everything”, April 2004


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