Google recently “Binged” itself out with the addition of a background image feature, which leads one to believe that Google may be conforming to match competitors. However, there are several avenues which – if they were to follow – would only take away from it’s simplicity and efficacy. Too, though, there are a couple which I wouldn’t mind seeing Google adopt.
Don’t: Display Popular or Trending searches
Honestly? Is it necessary that I know what the top 10 most useless searches of the day are? Pat F*%#ing Benatar? We already have suggested searches when we type even one single letter into the search bar, do we really need encouragement and recommendations before we even begin to contemplate searching? Seeing the most popular current searches simply serves as a stark reminder of the apathetic simple-mindedness of our culture.
Don’t: Advertise on the search page
Be it a subtle plug as the one pictured above or the more obvious and typical advertisements seen on several other engines, it just isn’t visually appealing. For whatever reason, advertisements on the front page suggest that the engine has an external agenda influenced by advertisers which will have an affect on my results. While I’m aware that Google’s result page’s are full of sponsored results and advertisements, advertising on the front page produces an odd sense of dishonesty.
Don’t: Over-complicate search results
Result links already have a short description beneath them. Why does Bing feel the need for a “More Info” rollover tab? Have users decided that a title line and two-line description is not enough information? Is clicking on the link too much effort? Why don’t we just put the entire website in a preview window that takes up half the screen and never leave the search engine. I mean, they’ve managed to integrate Wikipedia, why not everything else. There’s another don’t: Integrated Wikipedia. I simply don’t see the point.
However, while we’re on the topic of Wikipedia…
Do: Provide Easy-Access Wikipedia
Half of the time, when I’m fielding a Google Search, I really should just be on Wikipedia. But hey, I use Google as my spell-checker and my address bar, so why not my Wikipedia as well? Often times, the Wiki article is the first result, but when it isn’t it’s just a little bit annoying. Sure, it’s not much of an issue to simply scroll down for it – or include Wiki in the search query – but it is a nice feature to have.
Do: Embed video
However hypocritical it may be after degrading over-complicated results, embedded video is a nice feature. Unsurprisingly, Bing has managed to screw it up by integrating rollover playing. Why the hell is Bing so obsessed with rollover? Is it so hard to simply click on something? It reminds me of that goddamn rollover ‘emoticon’ ad that used to plague the internet with it’s incessant yodeling laughter. Does anyone remember what I’m talking about?
Don’t: Try and do everything
Look, you’re not my web-browser. You’re not my computer. You’re not my Mother. Please, Google, don’t start telling me what my favorites are, what news I want to consume, how I should search, what I should search, or anything else. Just do as you’ve always done, and provide me with a simple and effective venue to perform my internet searches. That’s all.
Don’t: Provide creepy suggested results
Apparently, Ask.com has a dirty mind.
Yeah, enough said.