Sure, the social web is great and all with everyone sharing stuff and syndicating content from everywhere, but it makes things pretty damn hard to find. Out of curiosity and bored, I did a google search for linux boredom. The first two pages point in one way or another to the same article, or someone commenting about that article. Useless cruft in my opinion. I’m looking for something to occupy my time while I compile the latest Qt for Glovebox.
Digging further into the results, it appears that the original article was posted to Linux.com. Two of the results point to the same Digg article, one points to reddit, one points to a forum robot syndicating the article (and apparently claiming it as its own), and yet another points to the friendfeed item of the person submitting the digg article. Thats a lot of useless garbage. The only other useful link out of all those 20 might be the link to the print version, but even then thats useless with the print CSS.
I’ve heard some people around the ‘net say that “web 3.0″ won’t be based on the social user-created-content aspects of “web 2.0″, but instead be based around actually finding the signal in the sea of static. The web 3.0 search engines should be able to discern between “content” and “discussion about said content”. The web isn’t all content as it used to be (oh, and what glorious days those were). Slashdot writes a quick article linking to something interesting, and 90% of the slashdot page is discussion about the article. Most of the time the discussion is longer than the article itself and sometimes is more interesting. However, on other sites–sites like digg–the discussion is mostly people writing simple one-sentence responses to a link, usually along the lines of “cool!”, “good find”, or just plain trolling.
The next generation of search engines should group that kind of stuff together. If did this same search in the future, I should just get one link to the article, with maybe a link next to it that says “Discussion” and gives a list of all the discussion pages for that article. I shouldn’t have to wade through huge lists of links, all eventually pointing me to the same information. I wanted to find something to cure my boredom, not a list of comments on an article.