Google may be the most used search engine, but it is certainly not resting on its laurels. Earlier today Google unveiled the developer’s preview of a revamped Google Search powered by a refreshed algorithm. The preview can be accessed through www2.sandbox.google.com and is codenamed Google Caffeine.
At first glance everything looks the same, but on closer inspection the numerous under the hood changes become apparent. Here are the major changes I noticed :
Speed : Google Search may already be lean and mean, but Google certainly isn’t satisfied. The newer version is significantly faster. It was more than 200% faster on most queries.
But thats not all. Google also claims to have improved its indexing speed. I couldn’t test this, but an improved indexing speed is definitely going to help Google in competing with Real Time Search engines.
Size : Google has ramped up its index. Google Caffeine consistently threw up more results than the older Google. Although Microsoft Bing still beats Google most of the time, Google is catching up.
Accuracy : Index size isn’t the most accurate barometer for judging a search engine. It doesn’t matter if a search engine throws up a few hundred thousand more results, because we are only going to have a look at the first few. Accuracy is definitely more important than size. To be honest the difference between the older Google and Caffeine isn’t huge. For most of the queries about 80-90% of the front page results were the same. But, there are definitely some changes.
So which one is better? It’s hard to tell. I find both to be very accurate, but Caffeine may be slightly more relevant in certain cases. From the limited testing I performed I got the impression that Caffeine has a reduced focus on multimedia content (images and videos). Some search queries also gave the impression that Google is giving more importance to Social Media (e.g. facebook profile pages).
Go ahead and check out Google Caffeine yourself. Google hopes to push the envelope on size, indexing speed, accuracy, comprehensiveness and other dimensions with Caffeine. What do you think about Google Caffeine? Don’t forget to let us know.