The Economist writes at the state of search:
Google’s problem today, says Chris Sherman, the executive editor of SearchEngineWatch, an online industry newsletter, is that they regard themselves as the best, and yet they don’t really seem to have a clear strategy, which seems to make them dabble aimlessly.
Yahoo!, the largest internet portal with about 400m users (of its e-mail, instant-messaging, music and other products), has spotted this weakness and come up with a strategy to differentiate its own search engine. Yahoo! has been at this game for only two yearsit used to use Google for its search technology, until it realised that this was the most profitable part of the businessbut now has hundreds of engineers working on it. In contrast to the quasi-religious faith that Google places in its mathematical algorithms, says Eckart Walther, one of Yahoo!’s search bosses, Yahoo! is about combining the best of people with the best of technology.
The idea, Mr Walther says, is to look not only at links between websites but also links between people and thus to use social search to solve subjective queries.