This new service is indicative of how Google, while providing un-monetized information, is also positioning itself to profit from it at a later date, if the service proves popular.
Limited to the USA at this stage, I like the interface (clean and quick, of course), especially how you an see where you could travel to and the minimum prices, for those with no fixed plans.
I was really surprised when Google purchased Aardvark, considering they’d already given up on the questions and answer game years prior with Google Answers.
Still, I persisted with it, because I like to help people out. But because my expertise was based on keywords found in my Gmail account, rather than my true expertise, most of the questions I received were not suited to me. And when I didn’t respond to a question immediately, and it gave up on me, I felt like I had missed out. It constantly left me feeling disappointed
So, along with all the other Labs projects, Aardvark is ending at the end of September. I’m guessing that such an automated system, with no monetization, probably didn’t have any staff to make redundant!
It was good while it lasted, but without Twitter it is nothing. For two months since Google’s agreement with Twitter expired, the Realtime Search, and realtime results within Google Everything, have just dispapeared. It is expected that it will be resurrected when they feel Google+ can provide enough useful content.
Although it is essentially simplistic, it serves a great purpose: a reminder of the fundamentals.
Full-size image over at SEO Book
According to MediaPost, the new search algorithm over at Google has caused Mahalo and Yahoo’s Associated Content to lose rank, while eHow by Demand Media is unaffected. Obviously Yahoo’s properties don’t use AdSense. Mahalo has some AdSense. But eHow and the other Demand Media sites make a significant contribution to the coffers of AdSense. I suspect that the new algorithm has been tweaked so Demand Media sites are unaffected, Mahalo is collateral damage, and Yahoo loses out.
Google always maintains that their algorithms have no bias, and that will likely always be true. However I suggest that almost certainly the tweaks made to the algorithm will be tested against revenue, and the latest iteration will be one that on the surface shows a dismissal of content farms, while they keep their biggest content farmers on board.
There is an opening for a more-fussy search engine.