Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

Yandex sets its sights on Google

May 25, 2010

Yandex, the Russian search engine is having a good time. Currently up to 7th in the overall search traffic stats, ahead of Ask and Facebook, Yandex is looking to capitalise on its new English speaking engine.

It has been noted that for many searches, Yandex is quietly out performing Google and delivering much more suitable results than current google search is doing.

Will this progress continue? Will Yandex be able to out perform the likes of Bing? Watch this space…..

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Google Caffeine Observations

May 23, 2010

Here is an interesting thing, the speed that your website loads is now critical to your web performance. We have a page within our site that is purely a navigation pages with all our necessary links on it. It is in general one of the most used pages on our site as all staff access it many times per day.

We have recently moved offices and were without a highspeed connection for the best part of a month. Because of this, some of us worked from home, or used mobile dongle connections in the office.

Now here is where it gets interesting…….. Googles Caffeine update has added average load times into the algorithm in order to speed up the web.

This opens up several points, like where does it get the data?
It turns out we supply in via Google analytics. If you views Googles webmaster tools, you can now see a graph of your sites speed performance. The mark the top 20th percentile as being fast, and the bottom 80th percentile as being slow.

Due to the volume of searches we were conducting via mobile connections, ( in a rural invironment I might add) we saw our average load time rise from a second to over 18 seconds.

At the 18 second point, our site disappeared off the front page of Google for “Search Engine Optimization”, causing a secondary drop in traffic so that the only hits we were then getting were 18 sec average load time.

We were initially stumped as to what had caused the fall from grace, and proceeded to double check ever single element of our process in order to establish the cause.

It turned out that not only had our own visits caused the problem, but we had given Google the data to decide to drop us from the rankings.

What this has done is to force us back to the drawing board, to speed up our design to the point that our new pages load in 0.8 sec ave, while having 900 k of data, some 6 times more than many of our front page competitors. This all means that we can carry more of our message than our competitors can and so drive sales.

The good news is that once we narrowed the problem down and took steps to fix it, we returned back into the top three, as if nothing had happened!

It raised a few questions, for example if you have a site that receives mostly mobile searches, you may well be penalised….. if you use Google analytics. How do you resolve that situation?

While I commend Google for their efforts, the current system is quite bug ridden, as potentially you could affect a competitors rankings by repeatedly loading their site using a mobile device…….. it is surely just a matter of time before someone does just that?

as one of the leading Search engine Optimization companies in the UK, it is important to stay one step of ahead of the major engines, but with this update it is difficult to pre guess which way they will go with it. One thing is for certain, if you have a slow site, you should remove Analytics as soon as possible as you will start to slide in the rankings eventually.

Find out more Search Engine Optimization

Google gains more share of the search market

May 11, 2010

Google has had a fantastic April, seeing it’s share of the search market grow by 2 points in the US to over 71%. By contrast, Yahoo saw a drop of 1% dipping below 15% share and Bing dropped 2% falling back below 10% once more, inspite of the massive $100M marketing investment in Microsofts new engine.

This must be worrying news not only for Bing, but also for Yahioo who are going to be using Bing search later this year. It looks so far as if the public have not taken to Bing as much as was hoped. If you have seen the TV ads in the UK, I am not surprised, as they make no marketing sense to me at all, and seem to imply that their search engine will deliver random information, or perhaps I misunderstand the ad?

The biggest loser in all of this is Ask, who lost a massive 37% of their search volume in April, falling to just over 2%.

Where will this domination by Google end? Good question, I believe that it will require a different approach in order to topple Google and I have a feeling that the big players aren’t brave enough to risk what they have in order to create a new search model, while new players now require massive funding in order to compete.

Max Mosley backs down and agrees to resign in October

June 24, 2009

After all his posturing, it looks like the teams association FOTA have won their battle to have Max Mosley removed from the FIA. He will Resign in October, having also agreed to abandon ideas for a financial cap on teams for 2010 and 2011.

The teams have won an important victory and shown their strength to a now weakened FIA . This is the best outcome for the good of the sport in general, now we will at least have one unified championship even if it is running at venues that have to use cardboard cutouts in the stands instead of real fans.

If we could only get Bernie to go back to the proper race tracks that support proper fans, such as Silverstone then we might have a great F1 Championship once more.  

Ron Dennis was reported to have said ” Ha bloody Ha” – not really, I made that bit up.

Last Chance Saloon for F1

May 28, 2009

With US F1, Campos Racing, Lola and Litespeed GP ready to enter next years Formula 1 championship who needs Ferrari, Renault, BMW, Mclaren etc etc….. Max and Bernie run the risk of devaluing a sport that prides itself on being the pinnacle of motorsport world wide.

The attempt to cap the teams to £40 has already got massive holes in it. In addition to driver pay and engines being excluded from the cap, it is also rumoured that there will be an additional employee waiver to allow a high paid designer for example to be employed.

The loopholes are already massive and I can imagine the playing field becoming more level, just appearing to be on paper for those who don’t look to deeply. This could allow a team to spend double or treble the cap and still remain within the spirit of the cap, whilst the second tier teams who are queueing up to have a go will struggle to make any impression at the back of the grid.

What will happen tomorrow? Will anyone else follow Williams into Bernies open arms?

Doing My Expenses

May 13, 2009

In recent weeks my moral compass has become somewhat stilted but the example I have been set. I look up to my elders and betters and so look to them to provide me with the moral backbone and a positive example for me to measure my own life by.

I am now sat at my desk completing my expenses for April and I am torn between my old way of thinking whereby I include all legitimate expenses incurred during the course of my working day and my new improved model whereby I look at everything I have spent and shoehorn it into my expense account anyway I possibly can.

By my reckoning, if I drink just to get through the working day then it now becomes an expense, as does that wrap of cocaine I bought last week…… if I need to get ripped to the tits in order to function then I should be recompensed… god damn it! Ok so the porn was technically on my tv at home, but it was research for an article….. maybe even this article so I can count that too! I want to get some decking for the garden…. any suggestions on how I categorise it would be gratefully accepted?

For some reason I don’t feel comfortable asking the tax payer to fund my sexual proclivities, narcotics habits and landscaping arrangements……. not because I am holyier than thou…. I most certainly am not, it is just an inner gut feeling that it just isn’t cricket!

It is sad that we have reached the time where we have to legislate in order to stop the supposed moral cream of the country from taking the piss out of us, the collective tax payer………

 

……you couldn’t make it up!

Is Cyber space filling up?

April 27, 2009

Recent reports that the internets capacity is fast filling up is causing concern around the world. It is estimated that demand could double in 2009 as more people work from home. This has to be a somewhat flawed arguement however as infrastructure will no doubt expand to allow for this growth. The current network is very different to the phone systems we had only a few years ago and so it is my conjecture that rather than see the internet grind to a halt, it is more likely to continue to expand unabaited. Our usage has indeed grown massively, in fact the internet is today in 2009 over 75 times the size it was in 2002 when measured in exabytes of traffic per month. This is largely due to the way that we use the net however, in has only been in the last few years that video and music could be reliably streamed to the masses. It is interesting to see that in February 2009 there were over 35 million downloads from iplayer, which is 5% of all UK internet traffic.

We will continue to advance in our net usage, and a the infrastructure in expanded the usage will expand to fill it, it will ever be thus.

The rapid evolution of Olympians……

August 16, 2008

The commentator on Eurosport today sat watching the same 100m mens final that I was watching and stated without so much as a smirk that the evolution of man was breathtaking……… I laughed out loud.

For those of you who missed the race, Usain Bolt from Jamaica, all 6ft 5″ sprinter of him….. galloped down the first 70m so fast that he dropped his hands in a “how easy is this” gesture and coasted over the line, 5 yards ahead of his nearest rival….. and still broke the world record…. with 0 wind assistance. If he had carried on running he would have been close to a sub 9.6 which is not just breattaking, it is also piss taking as evolution just doesn’t happen that fast.

Call me a crazy old cynic if you like, but all this will come out in the wash….. rule number one when cheating is try to look like its difficult and you really tried hard……. grinning and smirking as your supercharged arse flies across the finish line just isn’t the way to avoid questions being asked.

Just because an athlete passes a current drug test, doen’t mean he isn’t ripped to the tits on something good…. just that he isn’t ripped to the tits on something that is currently tested for. In much the same way that a man high on dope will pass a breatherlyzer, the authorities are always one step behind the cheats. It has always been thus, and will continue to be so, as long as the spoils are worth winning.

Mark my words, in a few years time they will be swapping the medals about again……..

A Level Results

August 14, 2008

Here we are once again, witnessing the 28th consecutive year of school pupils becoming smarter.

Is that really what we are supposed to believe? Whilst I wouldn’t want to decry the undoubted efforts of all our school children, the current methods of measuring their performance is nothing short of ludicrous.

If course work is allowed to represent so much of the final mark and the pupil is given several attempts to improve his or her coursework before it is finally handed in to be graded should we not be more concerned that students are still stupid enough to fail?

I know we live in a world where school kids aren’t allowed to compete with each other. so that there are no losers and the fat kids don’t cry, but surely these kids are going to implode when they hit the big bad world and realise that life is a competition. Some fat kids might actually put down their donuts and trot after the school bully, thus getting some excercise and not dying of a heart attach at 38.

If I was a parent, I would kick my kids arse for anything less than an A using the current marking structure, because anything less than an A equals laziness, nothing more…. oh, perhaps some latent stupidity also, but if the kid can’t copy stuff out of a book, and then make the changes his teacher tells him to then he deserves a life asking if “you want fries with that?”

An article in the Daily telegraph last week stated that in tests, todays kids receiving an A would have been given a C 20 years ago. Did a handful of C’s and B’s do us any harm? No, because they were considered valuable. The theory of giving every kid half a dozen A’s each has rendered the qualification system a laughingstock, and given the universities no way of knowing which kids can actually read and write. So the solution……………. to invent an A* grade……….. starting in September 08, the brightest kids will be working towards an A*, in 10 years time will it be A**** ?

All I can really add is that you couldn’t make it up….. un …. fucking ….. believable.

Dwain Chambers Denied Olympic Run

July 24, 2008

It is wildly refreshing to see a public body make the correct choice. I was almost stunned into silence by the British Olympic Commitees ruling that Chambers lifetime ban should apply.

I was half expecting a ruling by the European court of wining lapdogs to allow him to disgrace us again just so as not to impinge upon his human rights.

I salute the decision in that it protects us all and sends out a very clear message that cheats will never prosper. That is an important message in this day and age. Just because he put his hands up once caught, it is no reason to allow him to represent our great nation once more. It should be regarded as an honour only bestowed upon the greatest sportsmen of the time. To have allowed him to run would have sullied all that the Olymics holds dear.