Google Geek Night Sydney 2008 Reviewed

I just returned from the Google Geek Night Sydney 2008 where product specialists from various areas: Google Maps API, Adsense, Adwords, Gadgets, Youtube and Analytics explained how their products worked and displayed interesting demos eg: a 3D demo of the Singapore Formula 1 race route using KML

Upon entering the Google Sydney office (known as the Sydney Googleplex) I noticed a projector displaying what I could only assume was a live feed of google search queries (see example at right) which was pretty cool.

Before I took the photo with my Nokia 6300 camera phone I watched the search queries scroll past for a while and noticed that:

  • A reasonably large minority of search queries were in languages other than English
  • The queries seemed truly random with no pattern, in fact I’ve read a quote from Google’s VP of engineering that “20 to 25% of the queries we see today, we have never seen before” – I’m sure that makes the job of displaying relevant search results much harder
  • The live feed probably isn’t filtered because it showed a few “adult content” phrases that people were seaching for

Jeremy Ward explaining Google Gadgets

There were plenty of promotional brochures about: Youtube demographics and channels, How to make the most from your Google Adwords account, Google Gadget Ads, Google Maps/ Local Business listings, Google Analytics etc

Other interesting tidbits:

  • Teens and uni students (18-34 years) only make up 27% of the Youtube audience … I thought that would be higher
  • When I want a definition for a word I usually just type it into Google and see what the results are – however I learnt a better way is to type define: word eg: define: internet which gives much better results
  • To get results about a topic from a specific time period use this: topic beginning…end eg: cricket history 1950 … 1960

5 thoughts on “Google Geek Night Sydney 2008 Reviewed”

  1. Thanks for sharing. Did they have any topic on that seminar about their algorithm?

    Mind sharing it here if you don’t mind 🙂

  2. What I would give for a little time with a Google enployee to get an inside scoop. That would be like in the top 10 best moments of my existence

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