Since the SEO News industry has become so noisy (with lots of well-titled posts hyping mostly empty articles), and the major news sites are apparently jumping to publish first with such headlines, using similarly low-value content, it’s not easy to find real content about Google’s new “caffeine” indexing system. Google says it’s a big deal:
“For the last several months, a large team of Googlers has been working on a secret project: a next-generation architecture for Google’s web search. It’s the first step in a process that will let us push the envelope on size, indexing speed, accuracy, comprehensiveness and other dimensions. The new infrastructure sits ‘under the hood’ of Google’s search engine, which means that most users won’t notice a difference in search results. But web developers and power searchers might notice a few differences, so we’re opening up a web developer preview to collect feedback.”
Matt Cutts says this is a complete rewrite of many parts of the Google indexing system, and that it’s fundamentally a big change. He suggests caution and asks for feedback via an alpha review, and says Google plans to deploy it on one data center first for evaluations, before depoying it completely. According to Matt, “whenever you change SO MUCH stuff under the hood…” you need to move forward carefully.
There is some speculation that this will form a basis for the Google’s annual “screw the affiliates right around Thanksgiving, to have maximum impact on the holiday sales season” effort this year. If that’s true, I suppose it’s a good sign that Google finally recognizes the importance of such huge changes, and the need for more than a week or two of lead time. It also makes sense that Matt’s out front handling PR on this, since he has to face the webmasters at Pubcon in November.
I have yet to see any meaningful discussion of this new Google on the web, beyond basic observations on a few specific searches. But I’ll keep watching.
In the mean time I’m aggregating references on Google’s “Caffeine” update and what it might mean for search engine optimization (SEO) efforts. If you know of a meaningful article about Google’s Caffeine update, that would be interesting to SEOs, please note it in a comment.
- http://www2.sandbox.google.com/ (they’re working on it)
- http://www.comparegoogle.com/ (cute, but obviously not always working because it probably violates TOS)
http://www.webmetricsguru.com/caffeine (not published yet… not sure what it is)
- New Feature: opting out of Google by tattooing your forehead with a big “G”
- The Google Roommate Video
- Bald Matt Cutts with WebProNews
- Bill Hartzer’s review of Caffeine so far http://www.vizioninteractive.com/google-caffeine-a-comprehensive-analysis/