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The Evolution of Search Engine Technology


Today's search engines request that the user enter keywords or phrases in a text box on the URL page of the search engine. The place where we come together with the engine on the screen is called the interface. There may be other elements on display, such as advertising banners, but any information contained there is second to search engine functionality. When Google was first being tested for public use, the “human-computer interaction expert” watched everyone load the home page and then just sit there. They explained that they were waiting for the pop-up ads to load, and the weather reports, and the horoscopes. Google's founders originally rejected advertising; they also began only as a search engine. The more visually cluttered sites were “portals”—entrances into many Web destinations often designated by the individual user from various choices offered by the company that was also providing the search engine.

At the time of this writing, Google is also establishing itself as a portal in order to remain competitive. This feature allows Google's individual users to arrange a customized Google Web page that showcases their interests. Still other choices have to do with the question and problems of how humans conduct Web searches. The choices have involved keywords and various ways of combining keywords so that there is at least some chance of finding exactly what you're looking for.

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