Sunday, February 20, 2011

Oh, Google - How Could You?

You know how I can get on a roll, right? Well, that darned paper has got me going.

Some time ago, I started noticing that the Target cash register keeps spitting out Osteo Biflex coupons for me when I use my ATM card to pay for my purchases. It finally dawned on me that Target is tracking what I buy - not through a loyalty card or by asking my phone number, but through my ATM card. I'm now using cash at Target.

This morning I read on Floating Sheep (here) about Google "personalizing" our searches..."the basic point behind the tweaking of their interface was to allow results to incorporate information that your friends and contacts find relevant and share on platforms like Twitter, Linkedin and Facebook."


Then I remembered this NYT article that I had found while preparing for that paper. On the second page, the author describes how an actual person decides what articles go on Yahoo's home page, whereas Google uses an algorithm to perform the same function.

Double huh. And I've always clicked over to Google to do my searches, forsaking the default (Bing) on my home page. Think I'll stop doing that.

I need some ice cream.


Katharine said...

1984. Who needs government when you've got Google. You're makin' me paranoid. I'll go for some coffee flavor.

Pat said...

Ooh, coffee flavor. Good idea!