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The Mystery of Google PageRank

While reading the "Google's PageRank Explained and how to make the most of it" article, I came across the following excerpt:

"Since we are unlikely to get a definitive answer from Google, it is reasonable to assume that a page can cast only one vote for another page, and that additional votes for the same page are not counted."

It is common for corporations to keep chemical formulas as secrets (think trade secret). After all, it is these trade secrets that keep them competitive in their industry. But determining what to keep secret is really the key at being successful of protecting the formula. Sometimes, by keeping too many secrets, the answer is obvious. In this case, the formula is Google's PageRank algorithm.

If you think about it psychologically, why does Google want to keep counting votes a secret in this case? It seems that by allowing a page to cast only one vote for any other page, Google will have a win-win situation for its algorithm. In fact, there would be no reason to keep that concept as a secret. But yet Google does.

So does that mean Google's algorithm actually allow one page to vote for any other page multiple times?

Chieh Cheng
Mon, 5 Dec 2005 17:46:02 -0800

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