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Google’s New Library Newsletter Yields some Secret Sauce

My favorite scene in Fried Green Tomatoes is the over-the-top moment in the diner where the detective dines unawares on the barbecued remains of the bad husband killed in self-defense. “Secret’s in the sauce,” Sipsey keeps saying.

Google yielded up a little search engine ‘cue today with its debut newsletter for librarians. Not surprisingly, Google doesn’t ‘fess up about the true mysteries of PageRank; you really just get a general introduction (though a good one) into search engine best practices. The newsletter notes, “If two pages appear to have roughly the same amount of information matching a given query, we’ll usually try to pick the page that more trusted websites have chosen to link to. Still, we’ll often elevate a page with fewer links or lower PageRank if other signals suggest that the page is more relevant.” So what is “trusted”? What are these “signals”? Secret’s in the sauce! Nevertheless, useful information from a free newsletter–that’s pretty good stuff. If you don’t know what an inverted index is, or you need a good parlor game about relevance ranking, then dig in.

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