Search Powered by Humans, Hamsters or an Infinite Number of Monkeys

I recently heard about a new search engine, www.Mahalo.com, which bills itself as the world’s first human-powered search engine. This made me think of 3 different things.

The first is to wonder how this is different from the original Yahoo. This was back when the site was created by editors who approved all submissions and assembled catagory-based searches. As the internet was growing by leaps and bounds, they felt it was their mission to provide results to users. It had not yet been determined that spider searches and search algorythms were the answer to internet search. There certainly have been many other category-based searches over the years, so I am not sure what the distinction is here.

The other thing it made me think of is what would the world’s first hamster-powered search engine look like. Would the hamsters power the servers, or would they actually process the search results? There seems to be a parody site here, but I don’t have the time to build it.

And finally, I also wondered about updating that old saying that an infinite number of monkeys on an infinite number of typewriters would create the works of Shakespeare. So, would an infinite number of monkeys on an infinite number of keyboards return accurate search results?

Email Your Way Out of Contention

A recent study by a graduate student at Ohio State determined that job applicants with unprofessional email addresses were not considered for jobs. Some of the emails used were alliecat@, bacardigirl@, bighotdaddy@, drunkensquirl@, foxylady@, gigglez217@.

I might consider hiring alliecat, but not drunkensquirl.

Click here for article about study

MySpace Photo Causes Harm

A teaching student was denied her education degree when a “drunken pirate” photo was found on her MySpace page. It is a pretty innocuous photo, but this really should be reminder that you should never post anything on a personal web site that you don’t want your employer, potential employer, or even your mom to see.

And because everything on the internet is cached or archived, this stuff stays around forever. This is like you embossing this picture on the back of a cockroach that survives the nuclear holocaust.

Click here for The Smoking Gun Report with photo.

Post Relevancy

I was recently reading the Wikipedia notability requirements for inclusion, because I want to add a listing for my client, plus I had recently heard a story about an author who’s listing was removed because he wasn’t notable enough, and I thought about the notability requirements for my blog.

Generally if I find something on NPR, Slate or some random site, and it interests me, I would include it here. If something is on the front page of Google News or CNN, like the YouTube link to the Hillary 1984 video, there is no reason for me to blog it here. I blog as much for my own benefits, rather than generating links on any of the social media listings. I don’t actually use any of those anyway, although I have listed this blog on Technorati and I finally have my first link, giving me a rank of 1,873,219.

This flurry of blogging is happening from a coffee house with free internet, while Grace is at a birthday party.

Social Music

If you scroll down (or up if I have posted a lot lately), you will see a web widget for last.fm. I recently added this to share my music habits with the world. It tracks played music from both my ipod and my computer. I don’t know what I think of it yet.

Here’s an article reviewing all the main players in the Social Music space. I just found this, so I haven’t even read it to see if last.fm is what I should be using.