Search Fun

GoogleGoogle is one of those Web success stories that seems truly deserved. They have a great core product in their search engine, which surpasses so many of its competitors in accuracy that I now use it exclusively. And in the past year or so they’ve extended their business in truly interesting ways too, e.g. bringing online a huge archive of Usenet postings. Their latest scheme is a programming contest that opens up a database of 900,000 Web pages and asks contestants to do something clever with it — anything clever. “Part of your job is to convince us of why your program is interesting and why it will scale; other than that, you’re free to implement whatever strikes your fancy.”