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Will this next review is about the world's most famous one letter word, "Google". Ive been meaning to write a review about Google for some time now, and I guess it was about time I started doing one. I think like most people around the world, Google is their number one search engine, and it's been mine for well since the day I first installed a modem onto my computer. Google simply revolutionised the way people w=look at the internet, for me it's more than just a search engine it's practically a part of human life, I do my homework from it, read the news and look general info. This review will give hopefully a detailed analysis of Google, the features it has and moreover the features I use, such as the search engine, looking for pictures, and a whole lot more. I want to try and inform people that Google is more than just a search engine, and hopefully this review will do this, or at least inform the none Google users about its features.
Google first began way back in early 1996, as a research project conducted by Larry Page, a student of Stanford at the time. The general idea was to explore the mathematics behind the World Wide Web. Long story short, Larry and a few of his fellow students believed the Google programme could revolutionize the World Wide Web and in 1997 they registered the domain name google.com. The initial idea was to name the search engine googol, as this represented a mathematic feature, however because they spelt it wrong, it turned into Google. As the years progressed, Google had links with millions and millions of pages, for which users could find information about specific products, topics, persons and so forth. It became a huge competitor of rivals such as Yahoo, and later Ask, however Google always stayed on top, because it was user friendly, had a huge brand domination and always innovated their business model, by creating additional features to their search engine. As of 2007, Google had a revenue of well over $16 billion, employing over 16,000 people worldwide and having millions of worldwide shareholders.
I suppose the most common feature that people associate with Google, is its famous global search engine. Users can type in a name of a product, person, place and up pops a screen with hundred of options. Ok the first thing to note is the search engine can be split into google.com, and goolge.co.uk, for obvious reasons. If your for instance looking for a business in London, it would be easier for the search engine to locate it via the .co.uk page, whilst the .com, can also be used. I don't really have a preference as they both seem to bring up the same results for me. So how does the search engine work? Ok for argumentative sake we will use the google.com example. In your command bar, you would simply have to type in google.com, which will take you to their homepage. It's pretty straight forward and layout isn't as complicated as yahoo. From their you will have a smaller search box, for this sake lets say wee type in tesco, because we want to do some online shopping, once you have typed in the tesco name and clicked on Google search, it will take you to a page with massive reference to Tesco. The links are categorised by most relevant and most used, and so the homepage will always be the first address to pop up, followed by countless other links that will have some relevance to Tesco in some form.
Layout and features:
When you go to the Google homepage, it isn't complexed, their aren't millions of sub buttons, pictures and so on. When you go to the homepage you will only have the search bar in the middle of the screen, with the company logo and the search click button. However underneath are several tabs that have relevance to businesses wanting to advertise and so on? And the top of the screen will have the following features; Web, Images, Maps, News, Shopping, Mail, and the more tab. These are all extra features that users can use if they wish to and different command options will pop up once you type this in, this will be explained.
Whilst also being a search engine for websites, Google also allows its users to search for images. Now I wont lie I use the images section on a daily basis, for my work anyway, it gives you images of anything, you want a picture of the world, stars, planets, wall street it has everything. This feature is actually just as easy to use, you simply click on the images tab on the top of the screen. From their it will ask you to type in what it is you're looking for and like the websites, the images will then pop up, from external sources. You can change the settings of images by clicking on the advance image preference setting located right next to the tab. This will take you to a new section, were you can filter you images, not filter them, and display more images and so on. I suppose the biggest drawback as most people no is the ability to get nudity, which is obviously ones own personal business and choice to do. However from a parents point of view, its is very easy to see images that your kids shouldn't be viewing, the settings are easy to get to and with no password protection, a small child has the potential to view images that you might not want them too.
The news feature is another one that I find myself using from time to time, not on a daily basis, but if I feel to view it ill click on the news tab. In doing so a new page will pop up with all the latest news stories, we have the option of choosing the country of relevance, i.e. global or domestic, but also a chance to view the whether, the sports news and the finance news. The left hand side has all the tabs that you can choose, or you could even use the search bar to look for a specific topic, this is one thing that I love about this feature. It won't be just today's news, but articles from a week or so, so if you read an article and didn't finish it, you could use this and go back to it.
The More Section:
There is an additional tab that users will find on the homepage, clicking on it will drop down a menu with several other options, including Video and Scholar. Im only talking about these two options, because I use them everyday, unlike the other additional options.
Video: Well the Video feature is I suppose a way for people to view global sharing videos. I remember the tool was first launched as a counter competitor with you tube. Google had pretty much the same layout, video options, dated and catalogued for a global viewing pleasure. At times I found it more useful than you tube, because you could move back on forth from search engine to video feature. By clicking on the video tab, the page will load and take you to a new destination, with a similar layout to that of you tube. And from their you can watch the most watched videos, search for your own content and just have a look around.
Scholar: Im going to talk about this section, because as a final year undergrad, I have work to do from time to time. If I need a specific passage from a book, or just some info, by clicking on the scholar tab I can look for a relevant book. From their I can then view an online version of the book, if it is viewable. I love this feature for two reasons, firstly its easy, quick and very convenient, and secondly, rather than having to purchase or borrow a book from the library there are occasions were the book is online for free.
Like most search engines, a way of making money is firstly by adding these links onto the database. But also by including advertising offers. For instance if I was to type loan into the search engine, I would get a list of sites with relevance, however also on the right hand side we would get offers such as 0% balance transfers, or a new discount rate etc. Im actually not bothered with the advertising Google has on its pages, because their not annoying and in the middle of the page. Placing them on one side, gives us the users an option of looking and clicking on them, there are no silly pop ups and no unwanted advertising that can put you off visiting the site again. Furthermore, unlike most sites, they don't have the image adverts or video adverts, which again can be very annoying.
For me Google is more than just a search engine, its part of my everyday life, and existence. The search engine is quick and easy to use, site navigation is very easy and a baby could do it. And the extra feature really makes this site the top dog.