Sunday, May 9, 2010

Google Gone Nuts

I'm sure that everybody has noticed the most unwelcome change to Google that took place recently. You can see the new excessively busy and annoyingly Bing-like design on the right.

I have no idea what prompted Google to mess with the simple and uncluttered design that made them the search engine par excellence all over the world. Why they would want to imitate the not nearly as popular is completely beyond me.

Google is my homepage at every single one of my computers. I use Google at least a dozen times a day. So imagine my annoyance when instead of a simple and straightforward search results page I got to stare at this confusing mess. What are these people thinking? If I were into the Bing look, I would simply go to Bing and avoid Google altogether.

Thanks to, I have discovered a way to go to the normal Google homepage. You can find it here. Now, I have to change the homepage option on all my computers, which will finally save me from having to see the mess created of my beloved Google.


Khephra said...

Uhhh... 'beloved Google'?! How critically have you evaluated Google? There are so many reasons why Google blows I find it uncanny that you would so aggressively support them.

This post surprised me. If you posted a defence of coca-cola (imperialism), nestle (environmental plunder), Microsoft (anti-trust), apple (closed garden), or a host of other Big Evils I'd be similarly shocked. I'm continually amazed when people advocate against their best interests.

That aside, you do realize Google does not = Internet, right? As an academic, I would think you might be more discriminating. There are far better search engines than Goolge - and w/o the nasty after-taste...

Clarissa said...

Does the post title "Google Gone Nuts" signal aggressive support to you??

Of all the search engines I tried, Google is, indeed, the best. Or at least it was before this stupid makeover. My best interests include being able to find information online in the minimum amount of time and with the minimum effort. Google does fulfill that purpose. So how is it against my interests?

Clarissa said...

In the spirit of full disclosure, I also have to mention that I adore Amazon with a passion. That company is a godsend to me.

Pagan Topologist said...

I confess that I much prefer Yahoo's search engine. It seems to find the information I want more quickly.

Khephra said...

You make it sound as though Google exists without any context whatsoever. Again, I'm shocked.

What I meant by "aggressive support" was in reference to your cheerleading - i.e. "my beloved Google". It's one thing to suffer a demon, but quite another to cheerlead for them.

Do privacy issues not matter to you at all? (

Clarissa said...

Granted, I don't know much about cheerleading. Is the word "beloved" really so recurrent in cheerleader routines? That's new to me.

The very idea of "privacy" has changed dramatically with the advent of technological advances. We are filmed wherever we go and our every purchase is recorded. That doesn't scare me in the least, though. That's the price we pay for the technological world. I like the possibilities that technology offers me, so obviously I have to be prepared to pay some price for it.

It's very easy to live a life that isn't touched by these technological advances, which in turn will free you from the fears for your privacy. But you can't have your cake and eat it too. You can't be a part of the technological world and not agree to the attendant risks.

Google's fight with China that you reference in your post is admirable.

Khephra said...

It's not the 'risk' I'm referencing, but the context and cultures that underlie Google's hegemony and profligacy.

And yes, to say "my beloved" seems quite analogous to "cheerleading".

I see no reason to think Google backed out of China for admirable reasons. Rather, their motivations seem selfish and purely practical. If they were really interested in "doing no evil" they'd have adopted a different strategy altogether. Don't forget that Google helped the Chinese censor the Internet for years - which included them forwarding information on dissidents to authorities to make the government's job easier. And don't forget Google's relationship with the NSA. And Google's coziness with Homeland Security.

None of this context disappears just because they offer bells and whistles.

Approaching the issue from another angle, if I were to say that living in the modern era includes the 'sacrifice' of underage/sweat-shop labour and I do not see any problem with making purchases from the Gap, Old Navy, Guess, etc, would you think me a 'responsible citizen'?