Google Crap(s) vs StumbleUpon – Personalized Recommendations

DiceIt is a rare occurrence when Google create a product, or new feature to an existing product that isn’t very good, but now they have created… Google Crap(s)

I haven’t played around with the new Google Personalized Recommendations on Google Toolbar before today, so I thought the results would be interesting.

Google decided that based on my browsing habits, the following 20 sites would be interesting.

Results From Google Personalized Recommendations

http://inventory.overture.com/d/searchinventory/suggestion/
http://forums.digitalpoint.com/
https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/siteoverview
http://www.iwebtool.com/pagerank_prediction
http://www.rustybrick.com/pagerank-prediction.php
http://www.prchecker.info/
https://siteexplorer.search.yahoo.com
http://www.text-link-ads.com/
http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/
http://www.seochat.com/
http://www.checkpagerank.com/
http://www.googlerankings.com/
http://www.searchenginestrategies.com/
http://www.wordtracker.com/
https://adcenter.microsoft.com/
http://www.arnebrachhold.de/2005/06/05/google-sitemaps-generator-v2-final
http://www.webconfs.com/how-to-redirect-a-webpage.php
http://www.cj.com/
http://ezinearticles.com/

These are crap results

They are however crap for a specific reason. Google has predicted a site I might visit fairly accurately, but a fair number of those sites I have actually visited this week.
The other problem is that I didn’t discover anything at all – I have been to 90% of those sites sometime in the past, though before Google Personalized Recommendations.

Also see the second opinion later, I think we are being profiled, and it isn’t personal

I wasn’t even going to link to the above sites, nothing personal, but simply because I like linking through to specific things that people should check out that are worth their time.
Most of the above are good sites, but they are missing that urgency factor. Most of it seems to be TLDs (Top level domains)

Results From My Friends On StumbleUpon

Want A Second Opinion?

Muhammad Saleem was recently playing Google Craps as well with very mixed results. Actually I am fairly amazed that so many of the sites he had listed, also appeared in my list.
I know Muhammad’s browsing habits because I see which sites he submits to Digg, StumbleUpon and other social network sites frequently. Yes there is some cross-over, but nowhere near as much as Google suggest, especially once you take the local searches regarding Chicago out of the list.

Are We Being Profiled?

It seems to me that Google are creating profile groups, and if you visit one site in a particular profile group, they will suggest others within it.

Definition: Google Crap(s)

  • Google self-determined that their personalized recommendations were a game of chance and used a dice icon to depict the functionality.
  • Google Craps

  • Craps is a popular game of chance played with dice
  • Crap is a slang or colloquial term often applied to something of poor quality

Based upon this usability study, I have determined that the final “S” is optional, thus either “Google Craps” or “Google Crap” have the same meaning.

I apologise for the minor vulgarities throughout this article, but I just couldn’t resist the play-on-words

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Comments

  1. says

    i keep getting emails from goole about theit craps and they want me to upgrade my toolbar to get it on there. im glad to know it sucks before i downloaded it. thanks

    • says

      If you have a toolbar, you might as well upgrade to a newer one. Certainly the beta version for Firefox I find usefu, and I typically upgrade toolbars as soone as they are available.

      Whilst I may be critical of this feature, I don’t mind the data collection side, because I understand it help make my search results and advertising I see more relevant.

      That helps make my user experience on the web better.

      Google crps on the other hand doesn’t improve my user experience, because it seems to be “group profiled” rather than personal profiled.
      I have been placed in an “SEO group” and it seem SEOs are meant to spend all their time checking future pagerank.

      Since switching on personalization, I have visited some of the sites above, thus it certainly shouldn’t be offered to me as part of a lucky dip unles it was to specific new content.

  2. says

    Google craps is pretty new and possibly just a stab at eBay for outbidding them on stumble.

    The power of Stumble is the community. I think that the community here is actually better than the algorithms for finding ‘new’ content.

    I havent tried the new Google Craps but will do so soon. Thanks for reminding me.

  3. says

    Thanks for actually taking the tme to include the results so we could compare. Stumble results look much better. I had actually visited most of the pages on the Google “Craps” results also. Great article. I’m glad I did not download it yet.

  4. says

    I guess google isn’t the “all seeing eye” as I have sometimes thought. Very cool information you’ve provided here, as usual.

  5. says

    Your example was great. It drove home the point about google sucking up by recommending tlds. This is sort of the MS approach… release a crappy product and hope to win due to market penetration & try to improve it over time. I can’t remember who (aaron wall maybe) posted a couple weeks ago how google released this as soon as they decided not to buy stumble upon. Maybe coincidental but odd.

  6. says

    I am glad to see one are where Google isn’t the winner. They’d have to come up with a much more superior product to StumbleUpon before I would make the move over.

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