Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Bigdaddy: Big changes on Google to come

Google has announced a major update that will affect the ranking of web pages in Google's index. In contrast to the usual algorithm updates, this update will be much bigger because it changes the way Google works behind the scenes. Google has given the update the name "Bigdaddy".

The BigDaddy is Google's next "dance datacenter" that they have been working on. When it's live, it will be the "BigDaddy Google Dance". Matt said on Jan 4th that it'll go live in a month or 2. As Matt said:

"...I do expect Bigdaddy to become the default source of web results. The length of the transition will depend on lots of different issues. Right now I'm guessing 1-2 months, but if I find out more specifics I'll let you know..."

What is Google's Bigdaddy update?

Google uses a network of data centers with different IP addresses to answer search queries. These decentralized servers share the workload of indexing web sites.

The upcoming Bigdaddy update is not an algorithm update but a change in Google's data center infrastructure. It contains new code for sorting and examining web pages. According to Google's search engineer Matt Cutts, the update will be live in February or March.

Less spam, more content and a new Google spider?

Google is updating the data center infrastructure to handle potential spam problems such as 302 redirections or canonical URLs more efficiently. In addition, the new infrastructure will allow Google to develop more advanced algorithms and larger databases.

Another reason for the new data center infrastructure is that Google wants to be able to index different content types. Google is now testing a new search engine spider that is based on the Mozilla browser.

The new spider should be able to index more than traditional search engine spiders, possibly links within images, JavaScripts or Flash files.

How can you test how Bigdaddy will affect your rankings?

Some Google data centers that use the new Bigdaddy system are already online. For example, if you go to you can test Google's new data center.

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