Power of search engines – Lift ’10

Search engines are much more powerful than I knew! Estelle Metayer impressed me in the Workshop she organised at Lift ’10, “How Intelligent is your Company?

I have also learned such a new word as “deep web” in the Workshop, and learned by doing that a number of smart search engines allow us to find information from webs which are not linked to other web sites.

For example, pipl, a search engine that collects a number of pieces of information on person and display them in a well sorted out way. When I input my name, I was almost frightened and thrilled at the same time!

Frightened because my photo posted at my Facebook was there. How come, as I allow only my friends to see my page of Facebook!?

Thrilled because I found my video posted by someone! It was my presentation at IGF last year. I even didn’t know that someone was taking a video when I was talking.

“pipl” also displayed a series of my papers and books I published when I was at the OECD, and some dates back to even 1992! I felt I have my personal archive on the web.

To be fair, pipl is not perfect, yet, at least. It has picked up an ID photo of someone else from Facebook, and placed my volunteer activities at World Civil Society Forum as profession.

Above said, I’m convinced what technologies are enabling us to gather intelligence, any kind of intelligence, which you may not be aware.

So we should utilise them smartly, rather than stay away from them.

2 thoughts on “Power of search engines – Lift ’10”

  1. Yes, it’s amazing what you can find. It seems that online privacy has turned into an illusion from another age.

    The situation is getting even worse with Facebook and the recent changes they’ve made re privacy rules (see http://www.wired.com/epicenter/2010/05/facebook-rogue/ for example). It’s getting more and more complex and most people are totally unaware of the consequences, thus disconnected from the reality.

    I’m about to write a summary about the recent changes on Facebook. I can ping you if you’re interested.

    It was nice to see you again at Lift!

    1. Hi Oli,

      Great remarks! Yes, I’m interested in your article on Facebook. Please keep me posted.

      Great to be back in touch with you at Lift, too!!

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