Friday, May 07, 2004

Personalized Google searches

For some time now, google has had a beta version of it's personalized searching available. It works like this:

You select topics that are of interest to you to create your own personal profile. Once your profile is created, you search on a word or phrase and move the personalization bar to skew the results more and more towards your areas of interest.

Example: suppose you are interested in law and you are located in Memphis. You would choose law as one topic, and you would choose Tennessee as the locality for your primary focus. You can add as many topics as you want. At this stage of the beta game, you have around 150 or so topics. From my own personal experience, you are better off choosing just a few primary topics in order to skew results in a meaningful way.

In the beta version, only the first page of results is personalized.