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The Internet The Almighty Buck

Google Vs. Yahoo: When We Last Met... 381

I-R-Baboon writes "The New York Times has this article on the battle between the once #1 Yahoo and the current champion and #1 Google. Yahoo wants it's throne back and is ready to throw the gloves off and mix it up with Google. But can the uncluttering of their page, toning down the ads, and using some features not currently offered on Google give them their title back?" Of course, Yahoo! will have to get in line behind Microsoft as well.
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Google Vs. Yahoo: When We Last Met...

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  • nope. (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Answer: NO.

    At this point they not only need to match, they need to do better. And I don't see Yahoo to be the ones to do that.
    • Re:nope. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by Lumpy ( 12016 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:21AM (#5678028) Homepage
      The problem is that Yahoo CAN'T match Google without completely gutting their business model and starting over. Yahoo has significantly less hits per search than google and if they are still doing that stupid-idea of manual reviewing of each entry to the database as they once "proudly" flaunted they are completely doomed.

      If they can do better then that is great, but I highly doubt it unless they have a major trick up their sleeve the google engine cant be beat. (Yahoo is also rife with "paid placement" and forced placement so that a page that really shouldnt' be on the first page of returned results shows up there... making a search engine completely useless as soon as they start taking money for preferred placement.

      what's next? the phone company offiering me a chance to get my name listed in the front of the book before the A's? that would make the book useless in a short time, same way it makes yahoo useless.
      • by akadruid ( 606405 ) <slashdot@Nospam.thedruid.co.uk> on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:24AM (#5678299) Homepage
        One simple reason why Google have taken the lead is the focus shown by Yahoo on making their ideas pay back a profit.
        This policy has resulted in a switch of public opinion. People no longer want pages crammed with content covering every possible spectrum. The new generation of surfer can cope with the idea of a search engine, a news portal and a web-email provider on seperate sites, allowing them to choose the best of each.
        It's a bit like asking a hi-fi enthusiast whether he prefers an integrated system or a seperate cd-player, amplifier and speakers.
        The average surfer has grown up, and Yahoo has been left behind.
        Just my thoughts...
      • Re:nope. (Score:3, Insightful)

        Yahoo's search method has always been to search a directory first and then offer the user the option of doing a straight altavista-type search via a partner site (originally AV, then Google, then someone else whose name I forget, and now someone anonymous who may be the same group, I can't remember). That's always struck me as being a good idea - I generally get far more relevent links in Yahoo's directory, the only problem is that I usually get less of them.

        I personally would be disappointed if they chan

      • Pay to post (Score:4, Insightful)

        by DragonMagic ( 170846 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @01:13PM (#5679807) Homepage
        Don't forget that listing in Yahoo's directory costs money now for ANY link. Google's listing in a directory is free.

        Yahoo will have to drop their pay-to-place completely to catch Google. Their spiders both crawl, but Yahoo doesn't bother placing these pages in its structured hierarchy.

    • "And I don't see Yahoo to be the ones to do that."

      I agree. To me, the Yahoo people seem completely different from the Google people. Google people respect the needs of others. Google cooperates with the needs of their customers. Google people care for themselves and me at the same time.

      My experience is that Yahoo managers are abusers, basically. For me, the feeling of Yahoo is that they think they are more intelligent than me, and that it is entirely acceptable for them to take advantage of some shortcoming or weakness that I might have so that they can make more money.

      With Yahoo, I often see advertisements that imply that I'm stupid. One ad I just saw urged me to borrow money to redecorate my home. Another wanted to sell me car insurance, but only if I replied before April 15. With Yahoo, there are lots of "Special Offers". I just saw a link masquerading as a dialog box. When Yahoo shows that it cannot be trusted, then the good services that the company provides become far less valuable to me.
      • Clearly it isn't Yahoo doing this, but Yahoo's advertisers.

        I wonder exactly how possible it'd be for Yahoo to set standards that its advertisers would have to follow. For Yahoo, presumably there'd be a tradeoff between more people coming vs a lower number of groups wanting to advertise and hence, quite probably, advertising revenues falling despite the larger number of eyeballs.

        Which, to me, says yet again Yahoo and others need to look into other sources of revenue aside from advertising. To their credi

      • by DuckDuckBOOM! ( 535473 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @02:12PM (#5680182)
        I agree. To me, the Yahoo people seem completely different from the Google people. Google people respect the needs of others. Google cooperates with the needs of their customers. Google people care for themselves and me at the same time.
        My experience is that Yahoo managers are abusers, basically. For me, the feeling of Yahoo is that they think they are more intelligent than me, and that it is entirely acceptable for them to take advantage of some shortcoming or weakness that I might have so that they can make more money.
        Agreed, and here's a good example: The links from Yahoo's search result pages, both old and new, are referers which appear to contain session IDs; i.e., Yahoo has at least the capability of tracking your search activity, and the links you select. Google's, for the most part, are direct links. (The paid listings and such are referers, which I suppose they must be in order for Google to get paid. ;)
        Not that any of this is surprising. Yahoo's directors need a little abuse with the Almighty Clue Stick (tm) to the effect that, in addition to its technological prowess, integrity and class play a substantial role in Google's success. It's quite refreshing to see a corporation make money (last I heard, anyway,) without having to whore itself and/or pimp its customers to hit its quarterly earnings targets. Long may it reign.
      • The X10 camera ads were what did me in. The whole "Spy on women" angle was offensive. The method of delivery (pop-under) was offensive.

        Haven't been there much since, and definitely not without Mozilla, so I haven't noticed much. Do they still issue pop-unders?

        It's too bad Yahoo has sunk so far from grace - they could have taken a stand on advertising policies.
    • Re:nope. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by nanojath ( 265940 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:40AM (#5678365) Homepage Journal
      Agreed. The whole point is that Google distinguished themselves AS a search engine... and the minimalist interface and understated, clearly delineated text ads reinforce that idea. Yahoo!, on the other hand, was all about being a portal. When you hear Yahoo! you do not think "search," at least I don't. Never did, frankly.


      I went to Yahoo's front page just now (first time in a LONG time I'd been there) and what did I get: jobs, chat, travel, ads, directories, ads, news, ads, groups, ads... It's a mess, frankly. A positive assessment would be "one stop shop," which is I'm sure what they want me to think, but my reaction is "you can do twelve things at once but they're all badly done."


      A few cumulative hours of research and a well-organized favorites list makes a Portal completely redundant. Yahoo! would never exist if they tried to start up today with their business model. What they have now is name recognition, leftover juice from the bubble, and a certain amount of inertia.

      • Re:nope. (Score:3, Informative)

        by yivi ( 236776 )
        I went to Yahoo's front page just now (first time in a LONG time I'd been there) and what did I get: jobs, chat, travel, ads, directories, ads, news, ads, groups, ads... It's a mess, frankly

        While I agree, you were looking at the /old/ Yahoo!. There is a link there pointing to the /New/ Yahoo! search, which is way cleaner.

        You should check this [yahoo.com].

        While better than the old Y!, I still trust in Google to continue being King of the Hill for a while.
  • Kah Kha (Score:2, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward
    will google still be the top result for "search engine?"
  • by grazzy ( 56382 ) <grazzy AT quake DOT swe DOT net> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:03AM (#5677926) Homepage Journal
    google has a clean and fast interface, i dont want to load 10kb of bloat every time i enter a keyword to search for.

    • by rf0 ( 159958 ) <rghf@fsck.me.uk> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:23AM (#5678036) Homepage
      Google takes the its liteness very seriously. In an interview someone from google said that they kept recieving emails with numbers in it. One week 54, the next week 56. They finally worked out it was someone saying how may words appeared on the title page. Since then they've purposly kept it low

      Rus
      • byte misers (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Spy Hunter ( 317220 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:57AM (#5678182) Journal
        Have you ever used "View Source" on the google homepage? To shave bytes, they have used one-letter variable names and removed almost every nonessential space and newline. Take a look sometime, it's impressive (and confusing).
        • Re:byte misers (Score:3, Interesting)

          Have you ever used "View Source" on the google homepage?

          It's the best 3,736 bytes on the web.

          The only place I could find for improvement would be to remove the comment tags within the style and script tags. They're in the head of the document, so there's really no need to put them in comments for the benefit of older browsers -- browsers aren't supposed to use tags in the head as display content anyway.

          Then again, both the style and the script tags really SHOULD specify what language their content is -
        • Unfortunately, Google's home page is still not W3C compliant. [w3.org] They don't put in a doctype, which is the first problem, and few of the HTML tag attributes are quoted, resulting in 53 HTML errors.

          I'd be much happier if they added 100 bytes or so to the page to make it completely W3C-compliant -- it's not that hard to do, and it would make them have one more bragging right over Yahoo and the others.
      • by arvindn ( 542080 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:59AM (#5678189) Homepage Journal
        Grandparent: google has a clean and fast interface, i dont want to load 10kb of bloat every time i enter a keyword to search for.

        Parent:One week 54, the next week 56. They finally worked out it was someone saying how may words appeared on the title page. Since then they've purposly kept it low

        Have you noticed that the size of the google logo is 8.5 KB?!?

        Of course I understand fully well that google's liteness is a major factor in its favor but the point I'm trying to make is that:

        • You're downloading more than you think you are
        • The decrease in the number of words has nothing to do with bandwidth but is to keep users from getting confused/annoyed.
  • by caffeinex36 ( 608768 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:04AM (#5677929)
    When's the last time you heard someone say "Yahoo! it!" as apposed to "Google It!"

    -Rob
  • by abbamouse ( 469716 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:04AM (#5677931) Homepage
    Yahoo! needs to go beyond what Google offers. This is partly true because Google is #1 and "inertia" among web users matters, but this is only one reason that Yahoo! needs to get its act into high gear. The ther reason is Google Labs. Google is focusing resources on research right now (one of the reasons that an IPO would be inappropriate, since research is a risky use of money). In the long run, Yahoo! will have to compete with Google's research, since otherwise they'll be chasing a moving target. Even if Yahoo! reaches Google's standards, Google will always be ready to roll out a few more features. The question is: Can Yahoo! persuade its shareholders to back that kind of long-term commitment to R&D in today's economy?
    • by skillet-thief ( 622320 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:14AM (#5677992) Homepage Journal
      Inertia does matter among web users, yet people can change really quickly. I'm sure that within 6 months, some upstart search engine could take the world by storm. However, I doubt that Yahoo will be that search engine, since whatever they do will be bogged down by their other commercial strategies. I guess you could call that corporate inertia.

      The other big question is whether people will start using the Google spinoff services or not. I'm not sure that many people will get beyond the initial main Google search page.

    • by moterizer ( 640201 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @01:32PM (#5679922)
      One word: "stemming"

      Google's 1st Place position is well-deserved but not unassailable. If you want to one-up Google you won't do it by adding new features or slimming your GUI's. You need a more powerful query language. The future championship will not go to the s-engine with the biggest index but the one with the sharpest scalpel.

      Google's PageRank pocket knife is great (unsurpassed, even). But I still get several hundred hits on any given search. That's too many. Yet I have a hard time whittling that down (given Google's 10-word limit) because my queries end up looking like this:

      "(search | searching | searched) (engine | engines) (image | imagery | images) (graphic | graphics | graphical)"

      when what I REALLY want to say is :

      "search* engine* (image* OR graphic*)"

      An engine that could add stemming (or, better yet, regular expressions) to Google's PageRank precision could certainly take the throne.
      --

      When they finally put web interfaces in my brain, will the popup adds cause migraines?
  • ironic (Score:2, Funny)

    by nazh ( 604234 )
    isn't it a bit ironic that the first ad that pops-up in that article is for Yahoo!
  • I thought yahoo already used google's search in their site.
  • Making life easier (Score:2, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward
    Personally, I'm on a windows system fairly often and I find google is appropriate for about 90% of the web searching I do. But checking results against other engines comes in handy sometimes.

    I like to use the Lookerup [lookerup.com] search tool. It makes life a lot easier than the google toolbar and the tonnes of horrible software Yahoo installs to give you a better, "yahoo experience".

    Also, lookerup comes with a bunch of utilities I use a lot - but mostly it just makes web searching faster when I'm working on documen
  • Competition (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Andy Tanenbaum ( 655028 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:06AM (#5677945) Journal
    If Yahoo succeeds in its goal, Google will finally have some real competition, for the first time. This will only mean better search engines for us. Good luck to Yahoo. And good luck to Google. :-)
  • ha! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:07AM (#5677947)
    I'm sure that one of the _BIG_ reasons for Google's success is its nearly text only nature. It works beautifully on dialup internet, which is still like 9 out of 10 people using the internet. Until Yahoo strips off everything on their page except their yahoo logo and their search box, they won't be able to "compete" with Google in the eyes of your average dialup user.

    -AX
  • by allanj ( 151784 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:08AM (#5677950)
    is returning BETTER hits than Google. I don't really care about cluttered interfaces and stuff like that, if it returns a high quality set of links. So far, I have seen nothing to indicate anyone beating Google at that game. Better semi-automatic meta-data handling would be really cool - imagine searching for, say, programming related stuff and being able to indicate this in your search, and have it actually work!
  • by sirinek ( 41507 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:08AM (#5677951) Homepage Journal
    I've always seen Yahoo and Google as two different tools.

    Yahoo to me is more of a catalog, when I know specifically what type of stuff im looking for, I can find a list of sites.

    Google, I put in some keywords and it pulls up pages it thinks are relevant.

    For *my* (not necessarily everyone's) purposes, Google is more useful, but Yahoo is still good and a great site. Aside from toning down the obnoxious ads, I think it doesnt need to change much.
  • by luzrek ( 570886 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:09AM (#5677959) Journal
    NPR has a blurb about this too. IMO (nothing humble about it) both Yahoo and MS have a really big hurdle to get over. Google was the first really effective search engine, with enforceable patents on their methods. Both Yahoo and MS will have to either pay Google for its patents or come up with a completely different but equally effective technology. And any new technology will likely be tested against Google so if it comes up with different results it will be judged not as good. Yahoo and MS won't suceed in ousting Google, but they will suceed in developing new technologies so competition is still good.

    Just remember, google is now a noun and a verb, not just a number. Of course, I havn't purchased Band-Aid brand adhesive strips in a while, but I do have a five year old vat of Vasaline brand petrolium jelly (got married just under five years ago).

  • by BlightThePower ( 663950 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:09AM (#5677960)
    ...Google have a degree of mind-share now that Yahoo just won't be able to impact (realistically speaking). I realised the game was up when I was watching a rerun of "The West Wing" and one character told another to "do a google [search]". When your company name creeps into the language as a verb, you've basically won the battle for the foreseeable future. And yes, of course, marketing aside, searching with Google remains a far more rewarding experience than using Yahoo; less bloat and of course the superior technology behind it. Google works, its going to be hard to make me change.
  • no point (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Joe the Lesser ( 533425 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:10AM (#5677963) Homepage Journal
    Yahoo! doesn't need to compete with google here, they just need to realize that most Yahoo! visitors do so for the myriad of other useful communities and services that it offers. They may have started out as a search engine, but they've become something much more. No need to try and go back.

    At least they'll be cutting back on flashy ads, regardless.
  • by DNS-and-BIND ( 461968 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:10AM (#5677964) Homepage
    Yahoo has a bunch of interesting features, like free email and games.yahoo.com. But Google has froogle.google.com [google.com], which is a pricewatch-like item price search, and answers.google.com [google.com], in which you can pay to have your question answered by expert researchers, or if you're an expert at websearching you can make some money for yourself. Not to mention news.google.com [google.com], the robotic news delivery agent.
    • I prefer news.yahoo.com [yahoo.com], which has been around far longer than Google News and has a large array of sources all in one consistent interface. Google News is great when you want to read the same story from 100 sources (nice for movie reviews) but Yahoo! News has the same content from a smaller but still broad number of sources.

      Also, Froogle is horrible compared to Yahoo! Shopping [yahoo.com]. Froogle indexes many pages that are not stores, while Yahoo! Shopping searches Yahoo's own list of stores. Again, Yahoo has ti
  • Yahoo vs Google (Score:4, Interesting)

    by DeadSea ( 69598 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:10AM (#5677966) Homepage Journal
    Yahoo says they are trying to make their search smarter, but they still don't do many of the things google does.

    If you search for an address in Yahoo, it doesn't give a link to a map of that address. Google does.

    If you search for a phone number, Yahoo doesn't tell you who it belongs to. Google does.

    Personally, I could care less about sports scores popping up on the search page. Google returns relevent pages for sports teams.

    Yahoo's results do seem to be improved since last time I used it. They don't give you only results from their directory first anymore.

    • Yahoo's results do seem to be improved since last time I used it. They don't give you only results from their directory first anymore.

      Actually, that was the thing I liked most about Yahoo!. With most search engines you got automatically indexed pages, crap and all, but with Yahoo!, you knew that the first batch of pages had been vetted by actual humans, and not only that, but they were in the elite of sites added to the Yahoo! directory. Do away with that, and they become just another search engine.
      • I would feel that way if Yahoo's directory was actually inclusive. It's not. Especially since they now charge for inclusion in large sections. They also are not very choosy. They don't have just the best sites in each category. They have a lot of crap.

        If I want to look through sites that have been picked by humans, I know where the Open Directory Project [dmoz.org] is. I know where Yahoo's directory is. I know that google can show open directory content sorted by page rank. Its not so hard to go there on my

    • If you search for an address in Yahoo, it doesn't give a link to a map of that address. Google does

      Actuallly funny considering that if you google for an address, google gives you a link to Yahoo Maps where you can view the map.

  • by peterjhill2002 ( 578023 ) <peterjhillNO@SPAMcmu.edu> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:10AM (#5677967) Journal
    Before god created google, there was Yahoo!, and that wasn't too bad. Man was able to find interesting pages by drilling down through skillfully maintained categorical organization. Than Man created the computer and said, screw this, I can write a program that can do all this for me, leaving more time for Pan-Galactic Gargle Blasters [lysator.liu.se]. Man said, I shall call my invention Google [google.com]. In most portions of the Galaxy, Google has largely supplainted the more pedestrian Encyclopedia Yahoo!. In cases where there is a descrincy between the real world and Google, the fault lies in the real world.
  • apples and oranges (Score:4, Insightful)

    by st0rmcold ( 614019 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:11AM (#5677973) Homepage

    Problem here is, yahoo and google are apples and oranges.

    Yahoo is a marketing website which "happens" to have a search engine. They offer news, weather, articles on anything and everything, and banner ads.

    Google is on the other side of the fence, it's only a powerful serach engine, "THE" search engine, and that's what people use it for, you'd don't google for the latest news or weather, even for ads, you google for results.

    I don't think yahoo can compete in the search domain, so I don't think they should be fighting for the engine side of it, cuz theirs sucks in comparison, really badly. They should work on marketing to the people that could actually care about yahoo's setup.

    Googlers won't budge until you give them something faster and better. (or you brainwash them the ms way)

    :P
    • by g0hare ( 565322 )
      didn't you notice the GOOGLE NEWS Button ? I think the key is the main page loads in a snap. THen you have to click on the news link to download the purty pitchers
    • ah, the old days (Score:4, Insightful)

      by mattdm ( 1931 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:59AM (#5678520) Homepage
      The funny thing is, Yahoo got to where they are now by being conceptually what Google is now. They were originally a clean, simple, text-based index without many frills. This is why they dominated the Age of Portal Sites -- everyone else was overloaded with frilly junk. But then two things started to go wrong. First, the Internet got so big that the human-maintained index became impossible to keep up to date with anything short of an army of volunteers (a la dmoz). And second, some idiot marketter got tired of being a site that's primary focus was sending people elsewhere, and decided that maybe the frilly junk was the way to keep everyone "stuck" at Yahoo itself. The index -- the sole reason people ever cared about Yahoo at all -- drifted to the bottom corner of the page, and graphics and ads and contests and gossip and whatnot took over the page.

      But there were already a lot of sites out there doing that stuff, so that made Yahoo not very interesting, and then, when Google came along and did the minimalist web search thing so much better than Yahoo ever had, there was no reason left for Yahoo at all except for the last remaining inertia.
  • by Flounder ( 42112 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:12AM (#5677978)
    I mean used them as a search engine? I've used Yahoo for the Yellow Pages and to view some pictures hosted by a Yahoo Group. I can't even remember how long it's been since I used anything but Google as my primary search engine.
  • KISS (Score:5, Insightful)

    by thomasiomichelangelo ( 663504 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:12AM (#5677981)
    56k users don't want to load adverts etc. while Yahoo says they're going to use text ads mostly, they're still going to have them (if related), google is fast even for narrowband. While Yahoo seems to be still concentrating on how much profit they're making out of their search primarily, and secondarily on their users, google seems to the other way round.
  • by DJPenguin ( 17736 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:14AM (#5677994)
    I thought I'd go and check out the new yahoo site. So I went and typed in www.google.com - and of course ended up at google.

    For a second there I thought yahoo had REALLY become google!

    James
  • ugh....FUCKTARDS! (Score:5, Insightful)

    by the-dude-man ( 629634 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:18AM (#5678014)
    ...Moreover, Yahoo is trying to distinguish its search results by including information from its array of other services, many of them not offered by Google...

    correct me if i am wrong...but isnt the *lack* of these nifty little *features* that are suppose to distinguish search results what made google so popular in the first place? Why is the concept of simplicity so hard for major sites to understand?

    ..For example, someone searching for "Yankee scores" will see the results of the most recent Yankees game in addition to a list of baseball sites...

    yes that is cute isnt it? but i wasnt looking for a list of baseball sites, i was looking for the yankees scores, yet yahoo cluttered up my search results with *extras*. Screw it, i am going to go search this on google.....

    Everyone is trying to compete with google by intergrating new features an innovations into their sites. Google does one thing. It searches. Thats what search engines are for, search on the critera i give you, and give me the results. Its very simple. Google has an 84 linux box cluster and they index about 4 billon sites with it. When i do a search, it looks at that, formats the results so they look nice..and gives them to me. Why does every single company that tries to compete put more into it?

    I think we all know whats going to happen to this.
  • by revmoo ( 652952 ) <slashdot.meep@ws> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:24AM (#5678041) Homepage Journal

    If they can make yahoo lightweight, fast and effecient, as well as accurate, then *maybe*, but even then, if they do all that, they still have to give people a reason to switch over, which would be hard.

    As far as ads, as long as they are the unobtrusive text ads, I see no problem with them. Just the other day I was searching for a shell provider, saw a google text ad for what I Was looking for, looked at the site, and purchased their service. If it had been an annoying banner ad, there is no way I would have even thought about buying their service, but because they made an effort to be straightforward, and not try any sneaky tricks(I.E. Those popups that spawn more popups, etc). I good about buying service from them.

  • by KC8SWY ( 641048 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:25AM (#5678047)
    All search engines/technologies have their own purpose.

    If I am looking for a companies website and it isn't companywebsite.com, I would use yahoo and enter the company name. Once in a while It works for topic searches.

    If I am doing a general search, I used to use Excite or Lycos. I have moved to google as my search engine of choice for a few reasons.

    1. Google searches embedded formats (PDF, MSWord, Etc.)
    2. Google is fast and clean
    3. Free
    4. Google has cached versions of pages for when a site has been /.'ed.
    5. Google's rankings are not based on keywords but rather who links to the site.
    6. Picture search
    7. News search
    8. Usenet search
    9. Preferences for setting # of results p/page

    Yahoo! has a long way to go despite the extra services they offer (chat, games, auctions).
  • text browsing. (Score:5, Interesting)

    by rf0 ( 159958 ) <rghf@fsck.me.uk> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:26AM (#5678054) Homepage
    Sometimes when out on the road I like to use a text browser or the browse on my phone. Trying to use yahoo is a horrible expierence. The small screen is busy and hard to see where one thing ends and other starts. Google on the other hand looks like google. Simple and quick

    Also wap.google.com provides a way to browse the real web over wap. Also things like the google API just make it a much nicer platform. However it would be nice to have some competition for google just so they make it better

    Rus
  • Yahoo's great new feature is that you can search for Yankee's Scores [yahoo.com] and it will give you the scores right on the search page. It doesn't even seem to work for me.
  • I almost like Yahoo. (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ojQj ( 657924 )
    I'm probably an idiot for saying this on slashdot, but I use Yahoo's portal for e-mail, stock quotes, exchange rates, and customized headlines, and there are a lot of things I like about it. I've been looking for a replacement to Yahoo, because an incident with them a few months ago caused them to loose my trust, but I haven't been able to find one that had all of the above (Lycos has everything but the exchange rates and it's been my closest match up till now).

    If a portal site had all that and a good se

  • Command Line Vs GUI (Score:5, Interesting)

    by EvilTwinSkippy ( 112490 ) <yoda@nOspam.etoyoc.com> on Monday April 07, 2003 @08:31AM (#5678074) Homepage Journal
    This is the classic battle of command line vs. the gui. Namely, do you let the user communicate verbally with the computer in a largely unstructured manner, or do you try to lay things out for the user in the cataloguers best idea of what the net should look like.

    I used to work in a library. As soon as we put a searchable database next to the card catalogue, people stopped using it. How many of you roll into the local library and go: Hmmmm, I'm looking for a book on Linux. Is it filed under Electrical Engineering, or Mathematics, or have they updated the cataloging system to include computer science now?

    Yea right.

    The most valuable lesson I learned in reading was turn to the index. The table of contents are largely useless.

  • by SCHecklerX ( 229973 ) <thecaptain@captaincodo.net> on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:04AM (#5678215) Homepage
    While google is without a doubt now the best search engine, Yahoo is a great way to check the weather, movie listings, tv listings, etc. I think yahoo should focus on providing the nice lightweight easy to browse content that they do, while google continue to focus on being a search engine and not try to be a portal.
  • by AyeRoxor! ( 471669 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:05AM (#5678218) Journal
    I haven't been to yahoo in AGES, but I just stopped by. The front screen is so cluttered with "news" and "contests" and advertisements that I actually had to look all over the page to find where the search engine part was. Bam! That's all it takes for me to know that yahoo is always going to be a "walking commercial" and not a professional utility.
  • by lvdrproject ( 626577 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:30AM (#5678326) Homepage
    I'm not sure how relevant this is, but....

    Granted, a lot of computer-(mostly-)illiterate adults ("the masses", as we call them) have started using Google as their search engine of choice, as opposed to Yahoo! or MSN or Excite, but i've learnt recently that teen-agers and smaller children haven't begun to follow this trend so much on their own. I'm in eleventh grade, and only the two or three computer-literate students at my school actually use Google. Everyone else uses Yahoo!. Similarly, my brothers and sisters, all of whom are below the eighth-grade level, use Yahoo! (and "Yahooligans" or whatever) for their searches for school projects and games and what-not (one of my youngest sister's favourite pastimes is to search Yahoo! for something like "fun games", and then proceed to download every ad-ware/spy-ware Java-based puzzle game she can find). I'm willing to bet (by observation of some of my brothers' and sisters' friends, and how they use the computer(s) when they come over) that this isn't just isolated to the students at my school and my siblings, but rather is a wide-spread phenomenon, at least in this area.

    I'm not exactly sure what i'm getting at, but i guess if Google wants to fight Yahoo! in this battle that Yahoo! is evidently intent on winning, Google may want to hook some of the younger audience, who haven't quite figured out how advanced Google can be. They're attracted to Yahoo! (i'm guessing) because of three things:

    (01) Yahoo! Instant Messenger is a semi-common instant messenger (not as much so as ICQ/AIM/MSN, but i know a couple persons that use it), and i'm willing to bet a good portion of Yahoo!'s search engine users uses it mainly because of its association to Y!IM.

    (02) Yahoo! Mail is probably the second-most-common free e-mail service among "the masses". While i personally hate it (i'm a Hotmail person myself), i know many persons (including teachers) that use Yahoo! Mail instead of Hotmail. I don't know why, but they do, and i'm willing to bet that a good portion of the search engine users comes from that as well.

    (03) Finally, Yahoo! does a lot of stuff to appeal to the younger audience. They have "categories" or whatever, evidently to make finding things easier (i've always found it stupid myself), and they use lots of pictures and colours that (i'm assuming) kids like. And that Yahooligans thing. Google is just kind of plain-text, and for us, that's great, but for some people, that's a symbol of unprofessionalism.

    In any case, just some thoughts. I'm not saying that i want a Google Mail or a Google Instant Messenger or anything like that (i certainly don't), but maybe that's something for Google to think about.

    On a related subject, i always used Infoseek before i perfected my Google skills. But then they were bought out by Go. Does anyone remember Infoseek? :(

  • by adzoox ( 615327 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:48AM (#5678432) Journal
    I'm sure Yahoo can figure out a sinister way to "make money once again" for their search engine like they have found so lucrative for their personals and auctions.

    Has anyone ever bought anything by Yahoo auctions? I have. And while I know how to shop wisely there now, that doesn't mean there have been lessons learned. Look at the Apple/Macintosh section right now. More than 1/2 of the auctions there are fake/scams/illegal. Fake - just plainly don't have a 17" PowerBook (a lot of auctions have been selling them since January!) Apple OS Updates (illegal to redistribute) Presale auctions = ponsy schemes & finally there's just junk sellers - most of what I receive is in poor condition or not as described. I have even won an auction on Yahoo that used my own picture I had for the same thing on eBay. Just happened I needed it for the internal part and it was cheap enough. Yahoo allows this fraud in order to collect auction fees.

    It's the same way in the personals section. There are obvious "fake personals" there to harvest the "innocent" email addresses to spam them with pRon and HGH and ViaVoice for that matter. Some personals have models pictures or are an 11 on a scale from 1-10 and say they have sex on the first date. C'mon! -- Not that, it's the kind of girl I'm looking for anyway ;)

    I think Yahoo will figure out a way similar to these, like allowing pRon sites or spammers to have some sort of way of paying or meta tagging themselves to the top.

    I really honor Google Integrity for weeding the majority of that crap out.

  • Yeah, right... (Score:3, Insightful)

    by jafiwam ( 310805 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @09:59AM (#5678523) Homepage Journal
    Google and Yahoo are not the same beasts. Yahoo is trying to be a portal. Google is not. Google is trying to be a crawling search engine, Yahoo is not.

    Time and time again that "Portal" concept has shown to be full of problems; people switch between them, ad revenue dries up, content costs too much, management makes poor decisions, etc.

    I NEVER go to Yahoo to find something, because the first, and most natural act for me to search is Google. Usually, I find what I want, or switch over to Google Groups to see if people have talked about what I want to find. I do sometimes use Yahoo for portal-like services such as email, maps, directions and yellow pages.

    So in my opinion, Yahoo should try to knock off sites such as MSN or AOL.com, which have a closer competition than what Google does. Yahoo could pretty easily use their existing strengths to leverage position among their peers, rebuilding their business model to go after the Google-like market would be a dumb idea.

    Also, I will NEVER use a search that I know to put paid listings in the results. Sites get listed in Yahoo because they paid to be there, if they paid to be there, they are selling something and won't give me the truth. Searches of the Internet are for information, not shopping. (Though there are segments of population and the internet where shopping is a big part of it.)

    Yahoo could quickly increase their directory listings by simply using DMOZ instead if their own directory-creation staff. It's FREE (as in beer) for the taking! DMOZ is both larger and more relevant than Yahoo by a longshot. The part where DMOZ falls down is they do not have enough money for bandwidth to support the traffic they get, so getting useful stuff out is sometimes tricky. (Of course, there is always Google Directory, a mirror of DMOZ.)

    Yahoo should not bother competing with Google, rather do what they do well. If they had spent time not sucking, rather than riding the money train, maybe they would not be where they are today.
  • Why does a search for "linux" return a link to:
    http://srd.yahoo.com/S=2766679:WS1/R=1/K=linu x/SS= 82593/OCS=82532/H=0/T=1049724247/F=e248244e7fc465e 82c9bf12c25f246e6/*http://www.linux.org/
    Instead of
    http://www.linux.org

    And It wasn't even the frelling first result It was behind the directory and sponsored links.

    So Let me get this straight Yahoo, I have to dodge your directories *and* sponsored links, I get my privacy invaded. Sounds good where do I sign up?
  • by muffen ( 321442 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:22AM (#5678671)
    My start-page is http://my.yahoo.com. Still, I can't remember the last time I used yahoo for searching anything. I think Yahoo is great when it comes to reading news, looking at stock, getting travel advice or looking at book reviews. However, at searching the web, I like google.

    Maybe yahoo should try to compete with google. Instead, they should focus on what they are good at, being a portal! Yahoo IM is also great, and that is also another component they could try earning money on (create a corporate version of it etc.).

    To be honest, I wouldn't mind Yahoo getting a little bigger though. Even though google is pretty good, some competition never hurts!
  • Google's News [google.com]: Quick loading (though not as quick as Google's main page), provides every top story, updated minute-ly, with links to alternate sources from around the world about every story so that you can get alternate points of view...
    Plus, search through thousands of news stories over the past months/years/etc.

    Yahoo's news search [yahoo.com]: Search through thousands of news stories... but no listing of new stuff.

    Yahoo's news page [yahoo.com]: Slow and cluttered news page, one source (primarily) for stories, only one story per section, and less obvious search area.

    That's why news.google.com is now my home page (plus I've got the toolbar for searches)

    -T

  • Weblogs (Score:5, Insightful)

    by The Ape With No Name ( 213531 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:34AM (#5678748) Homepage
    if only google would allow us to ignore blogs. Man, does searching suck now. Half of some of my searches produce blogs. in other words, they produce hot-air from people who consider linking to other blogs "proof."
  • by mnmn ( 145599 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:41AM (#5678784) Homepage

    The whole view of the Internet for the average person is through search engines, yahoo or google. This makes things dangerous.

    Perhaps the US defence department gets involved and links searches to WAR and IRAQ to cnn sites but none of Al Jazeera. They could even build a catalog of IP address that have searched for things a govt wouldnt want its people to know.

    This is why there must be diversity and competition between search engines. Search engines should also be local to countries to reduce bandwidth, and decrease centralized control as much as possible. If this, and DNS can be localized in countries, power can be removed where it doesnt belong. Unfortunately, even I couldnt switch away from google, even for this principle, because theres no equivalent technology with the same clarity elsewhere.
  • by bigberk ( 547360 ) <bigberk@users.pc9.org> on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:50AM (#5678856)
    After so many years of 'web programming' advancement, the big guys are coming around full circle and striving to simplify the appearance of their web sites.

    "Whoa! Look what I discovered. We can do this without an image map"...
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:52AM (#5678865)
    By two things, totally cluttered search pages stuffed with ads. And paid ranks. Google didn't do that and people went over to google because it had a lean and easy interface and you could trust the results more than you could on other search engines.
  • Personally (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Fujisawa Sensei ( 207127 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @10:53AM (#5678879) Journal

    I think Yahoo sucked when was #1, and that it will continue to suck. The only reason that it was number one was people bought into the hype.

    From my perspective Yahoo was allways second rate. Early on Webcrawler kicked much ass, then AOL bought it. After Webcrawler there was Altavista, (I could actually find stuff on Altavista). Now there is Google.

    Someone will invent something to beat Google. I doubt gonna be Yahoo or Microsoft. Both of these companies have too much invested in their current business model to throw it out and risk it on something innovative and therefore untested.

  • by 5i ( 112354 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @01:00PM (#5679730)
    they still think they're only the FIFTH [yahoo.com] best search engine.

    amusingly, even yahoo thinks Google is the best in the world

  • by aengblom ( 123492 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @01:58PM (#5680095) Homepage
    This strikes me as an ego thing. Yahoo thinks it's a search site and thinks it should be the BEST search site.

    Instead, it truly is a "portal" that offers a bunch of services in a "nice" wrapper -- ONE being search.

    Google provides ONLY search and it does it really well. Yahoo should use google.

    This is like news.yahoo.com forgoing all AP/Reuters/NY Times/ other sources of information and going into the news gathering business.

    It doesn't make any sense!
  • oh yeah (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cr@ckwhore ( 165454 ) on Monday April 07, 2003 @02:07PM (#5680151) Homepage
    kinda reminds me of when they looked like this and actually were the #1 search engine ...

    http://web.archive.org/web/19961017/www2.yahoo.com / [archive.org]

    Yep, those were the days. Notice how clean and "google-esque" it truly was? Hmm... could the return to their roots? Perhaps if they're willing to get rid of the cruft. Portals suck. Search engines are useful. Don't confuse "portal" with "search engine" Yahoo, don't.

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