Search Engines Invention and Development
The initial idea of search engines was first developed in 1945 by the write-up by Vannevar Bush (detailed in the video History of Search Engines (1945-1993). Gerard Salton, in 1990 came with the idea of storing and developing. The first search engine was referred to as Archie and searched FTP sites. However, the storage technology was still backward. Therefore, the limited space only allowed listing and not the content of the pages available. As time went by, developments were done to the exploration abilities of the search engine. It would seek to improve retrieval time, storage, and yield a smart outlook. In 1994, Yahoo was created with a higher ability to scan more data faster than the human ability using the bot’s technology. Google’s earliest edition, BackRub, developed by Larry and Sergey brought with it the ranked pages and citation notation. Two years later in 1998, the Google brand was launched.
Main question: Who has benefited from its transformative effects in a political-economic and social sense, and who has not?
The businesses adopted the use of search engines from the time it became possible to create sites and upload most of its data. It greatly reduced the paperwork and the need for the physical storage of data. Through the system, the content would also be retrieved easily and efficiently with little or no alteration. Secondly, the platform allowed people to view and read from the virtual pages. For instance, currently, most of the current constitutions of many countries can be found online through search engines. Other political data of a nation have also been stored and made accessible to the people who need it from different geographical locations.
Economically, the search engine has worked in two perspectives. One, it has allowed the sellers to inform buyers about the availability of the products available. Secondly, it is through the mechanism of online sharing of information that has globalized business concepts. For instance, a company can develop a new way of product promotion. As the product is displayed via the search engine, other internet users will see the idea, copy or modify and implement it. Thus that becomes the emerging trend in business.
The world today is referred to as a global village. It is due to the search engine capable of providing information from any section of the world. The tool gives access to chunks of data uploaded by individuals, governments, and organizations (Lui & Au, 2018). International events today are captured live and are spread all over the globe through search engines. For example, Olympic events do not wait a week or even hours before they reach people. From whichever corner of the world, search engines have allowed people to share information thus enhancing the social development of all the people.
Figure 2: Olympics 2020 Flier Template. Image by PostMyWall (2020)
Despite all the benefits of search engines to many businesses, physical libraries have been on the negative receiving end. The onset of other pandemics such as the COVID-19 has worsened the situation as people are encouraged to stay away from social places. Thus, there might come a time when we will no longer go to libraries for services that are a click away. Technically all the information in the world is on the tip of our fingers.
How has this innovation affected your study or work, and what problems does it present to you?
The search engine is currently the best invention that happened to the student fraternity especially in the higher learning level. It has impacted so my studies significantly. First, through the search engine, I can get clarification of an idea that was not well put across by the tutor. Secondly, assignments require research, and information currently is found in two places, the school library, and the search engines. So, for me to save time and resources, I simply key in the topic I am interested in and the information required pops up. Technically, search engines have made school life easier and enjoyable. It has freed and availed much time to spend elsewhere, that would have been otherwise spent in the library or consultation room seeking the teacher’s clarification. Thirdly, I have learned to appreciate and acknowledge other people’s work and data presented online. For instance, the search engines have the regulation that insists on the references and respect for authorship.
However, despite the advantage of the search engines, it has limited the social life of learners and people. For instance, an assignment that would previously encourage the students to meet and discuss the answers from different understanding is now done individually. Consequently, reliance on technology reduces the need to understand. Instead, researchers only consider having the ability to remember the required aspects. Arguments and listening to the opinion of others would aid to sink the information even better. Second, the internet contains all sought data from different perspectives. And with the current freedom of uploading information, some content is displayed while the search cannot be verified. Thus, it would be appropriate to work closely with the teacher’s guidance. However, it is usually much easier to find the information online to back the queries that I may have.
Search engines have played important role in the life of many people. the idea to have a storage of information developed in 1945 and first initiated 45 years later brought about the current search engines that we use. From 1990 to 2000 was the era of the development of search engines. The harmonization of the information globally was an invention that has touched social, political, and economic perspectives of life. Governments have used the platforms to store their data as it allows access to information from different geographical locations. As such, people can learn about an issue through the search engine. Also, economically, business globalization has been due to the abilities inserted in the search engines. Furthermore, socially, people get to interact through the platforms provided in the search engines. Live events are aired reaching many people in different parts of the world.
Aggarwal, C. (2018). Information Retrieval and Search Engines. Machine Learning for Text, 259-304. DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-73531-3_9.
Büttcher, S., Clarke, C. L., & Cormack, G. V. (2016). Information Retrieval: Implementing and Evaluating Search Engines. New York: MIT Press.
Lui, R. W., & Au, C. H. (2018). Establishing an Educational Game Development Model: From the Experience of Teaching Search Engine Optimization. International Journal of Game-Based Learning (IJGBL), 8(1), 22. DOI: 10.4018/IJGBL.2018010104.
May, R. (Narrator ). (2020). History of Search Engines (1945 – 1993) [Motion Picture].
Ratten, V. (2019). Entrepreneurship and the Community: A Multidisciplinary Perspective on Creativity, Social Challenges, and Business. Berlin: Springer Nature.