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Google Adds Location Targeted Searching 326

Posted by CmdrTaco
from the where-am-i dept.
miradu writes "Many Slashdot users may remember that the winner of last year's Google programming contest's entry was a location specific search. Now, Google has made a version of Daniel's idea available to use on Google Labs. Google Search By Location lets you search for things near some zipcode, or city/state. It then gives you a map with each search result pinned on it. V"
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Google Adds Location Targeted Searching

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  • by sjwt (161428) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:47PM (#7034900)
    But wouldnt be cool to see this applyed to
    more then just the US?

    With all the talk about Google being
    'The' serch engine, id love to see
    something like this applyed on a
    world wide base.

    mind you not knowing how it works
    it may require ppl to put decent
    contact info on there pages,
    ie country name.
  • What? (Score:2, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:49PM (#7034924)
    From the end of the article: "V" ????...
  • by Thinkit3 (671998) * on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:51PM (#7034934)
    Once GPS becames much more universal, it would be great for us all to move to latitude and longitude. That's a truly international standard.
  • Re:Great, but... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Tumbleweed (3706) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:54PM (#7034969)
    That's because there ARE no hot single geek chicks - they're all hot single NERD chicks. Sheesh.
  • by zangdesign (462534) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:58PM (#7035018) Journal
    I'd think GPS would have to be damn near ubiquitous for that to work. Which would require that education be improved so that graduating seniors actually knew what lat/long is.

    I'm not going to hold my breath on that one. Give it a hundred years or so.
  • What if's (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @12:59PM (#7035026)

    I wonder how they will be enforcing the zip code registration. The main drive behind google and the page rank thing was to take search engine optimization off the page and out of the hands of the web master so as to avoid keyword stuffing and not-quite-honest optimization techniques.

    But it seems sort of hard to determine the "location" of a website without input from the people behind the site. There are possibilities for abuse.

    But maybe there's no incentive to be listed in the wrong zip code... well, maybe there is.

    If you do a lot of business on the web or by mail, and your physical location doesn't matter, you might post 100 versions of your site, each with the zip code of a large metropolitan area. But then how many people would do that?

    Ah hell, I don't know. I'm rambling...
  • by gatekeep (122108) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:00PM (#7035042)
    The results returned by this thing seem to be fairly irrelevant.

    When searching for 'food' with my office location I received the following results;

    -Food allergy and intolerances, fact sheet
    -Oriental grocery stores list for my area
    -Sources of free or low cost
    -Food science publications & journals
    -Thoughts on Food Safety
    -History of Hannakuh foods
    -Oriental grocery stores list (again)
    -foodandwine.com's best new chefs list

    Admittedly, 'food' is a pretty lame search, but I would've hoped to see a couple restaurants and grocery stores in the list.
  • by mblase (200735) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:06PM (#7035101)
    Google gives good search results except when the law tells them not to -- and even then, they give you a link telling you that results were removed, and why.

    Google self-censors already, anyway -- by altering their PageLink algorithm when certain dishonest sites try rigging Google's system for better page results. This sort of self-censorship is a Good Thing.

    If you want a completely "open" search engine, you're probably going to keep looking. Other engines are increasingly giving into advertising boosting search results, and probably nobody has the breadth and depth of Google's database. You might not like the fact that they have to comply with the law in order to keep returning results at all, but believe me, they don't like it either, and they do all they can to remain honest.
  • by docwardo (304911) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:13PM (#7035166)
    Question here:

    But all this info IP address, variable values, and sites on which the user clicked....

    isn't that all just from most standard web server log?

    Technically doesn't /. record every page I click on, my orginating IP address and any searches I perform?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:24PM (#7035231)

    "Searches are logged by time of day, originating I.P. address (information that can be used to link searches to a specific computer), and the sites on which the user clicked."

    Incredible! Their webservers have logfiles, you say? I'm very concerned.

  • Re:Useful service (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Wateshay (122749) <{bill.nagel} {at} {gmail.com}> on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:47PM (#7035433) Homepage Journal
    In other words, I call "prior art".

    So? I didn't see anyone mentioning that Google was going to try to patent the idea. They're not Amazon.com.
  • by pavon (30274) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @01:49PM (#7035458)
    Well, no I don't think it would be more elegant. Latitude and longitude tell you where something is located, it doesn't tell you how to get there. "On Adams street, just north of McAlister", will always be more usefull to humans than 35.31234' N 108.47343' W (and we would need that many decimal places). That, however, does not mean that the underlying implementation can't use lat, long.
  • US-only... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by ZvlvLord (200368) on Tuesday September 23, 2003 @08:03PM (#7039110) Homepage
    Good day,
    Would it hurt the story submitters and/or the moderators to mention it when something is US specific ? Not that we have anything against it, but I'm tired on clicking on a link to only find out that whatever the link is pointing to is US-specific. I was excited by this search-by-location feature and then... saw that it was only for the US. Feel free to mod me down if you want, but Slashdot's readership is NOT 100% American. Get a clue.

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