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Sunday, August 3, 2008

New Competitor for Google PageRank!

Posted by @ 11:00 pm

Google better watch out: there might be a new competitor in town for PageRank.

CNet reports that Microsoft has announced a new idea that they call BrowseRank, which they hope will help boost the search engine’s popularity.

For those that may not be familiar with Google’s PageRank, CNet explains it as “an algorithm that assesses a specific page’s importance by how many other Web pages link to it and by the importance of those linking pages.”

However, Microsoft BrowseRank is a little bit different in that it uses what they call a user browsing graph that ranks Web pages by people’s behaviour.

“The more visits of the page made by the users and the longer time periods spent by the users on the page, the more likely the page is important. We can leverage hundreds of millions of users’ implicit voting on page importance,” the researchers said in BrowseRank: Letting Web Users Vote for Page Importance, a paper from the SIGIR conference this week in Singapore.

With authors of this paper from Microsoft Research Asia, Nanaki University, Chinese Academy of Sciences and Peking University this is obviously something that Microsoft is putting a lot of effort into in order to catch-up to Google.

This new project from Microsoft is still in the development stage. So we will need to wait a little while before we see any real benefit for website owners, but when we hear anything more we will let you know.

Courtney Mills Courtney is an online marketing and communications specialist at ineedhits - a leading search engine marketing firm with over 16 years experience. Courtney has been living and breathing online marketing for over 5 years. She specializes in web and communication marketing, while providing news and opinion to online marketing communities.

View Courtney Mills's profile

Discussion (1 - comment)

Very interesting, although this has been tried before. DirectHit had a search engine built entirely on clickstream data (Acquired by in 2000). They got the data from ISPs in those days. The end-result is really not that much better than Page-Rank.

Me.dium on the other hand ( is processing user’s clickstream data in real-time to create a different lens based on what’s going on now. e.g. do a search for John Edwards on Google or Live, and you get and wiki/johnedwards. Do the same search on Me.dium and you learn that today people care about his love child, pictures of his mistress, etc.

The difference is real-time (what people are browsing now) vs. historical (what they browsed in the past). Social vs. Old School. Check it out.

By Chris - August 4, 2008

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