Doing A Schmidt
A) Using The Onion Router And Firefox
B) Using Yandex.com as the default search engine and depriving UKUSA of Cheap Intel
C) Opening email accounts using TOR, acessing them with TOR only
D) encrypting all of it with GPG
The Firefox 4 search toolbar will offer Microsoft Bing as an alternative to Google, as Mozilla takes another step towards its traditional nemesis — and apparently hedges its bets against its traditional sugar daddy. As Mozilla announced this morning with a blog post, the latest English-language version of Mozilla's open source …
...if only because it's not Google. The only major downside is that some features (e.g. image search) don't work with JS turned off. It can also be mildly annoying that Bing applies SafeSearch to standard search, not just images (unless you turn it off). But that brings be to the biggest advantage. Bing seems to lack Google's more subtle and insidious form of censorship: PageRank. I would describe Bing's search algorithm as refreshingly naive.
I use Scroogle to avoid the tracking from Google and all I care about is 'can I find the info I want?', not some religious conviction that one is better than the other. It's not often I have to concede that no-one in the web knows what I'm after,, but if Scroogle can't supply a link then I'll go over to Bing or some meta-search engine.
And frankly they've all got silly names.
I hate to prick your bubble there, but MS still has 91% * of the desktop OS market. I'm not sure what your particular metric for relevancy is, but since some one in Redmond can push a button and the results will show up on 91% of end users desks within minutes, might I suggest that it's somewhat wonky ?
(Bonus flamebait, these numbers also show iOS has more users than Linux)
"MS still has 91% * of the desktop OS market."
Eh? I never said anything to the contrary old chap. Market share does not necessarily equal relevance.
I'm writing this up on a Windows 7 machine, while listening to music through the Xbox. The missus is currently using her XP machine to faff around on Facebook. Lots of Microsoft here! The point is this though - all of these things we could be doing on ANY machine, running ANY operating system, be it Windows, MacOS, Linux, iOS, or Android etc. The underlying operating system really is irrelevant... which is why Microsoft have to pull moves like this, to try and keep their brand out there.
In this day and age with the world moving online, no single OS has an advantage over another (except maybe in terms of security, but that's a whole other kettle of fish). Sorry, but the days of "My OS is better than your OS" are dying fast... and I bet Steve Ballmer hates that! :D
After looking around some for other options, I've been happily using http://duckduckgo.com/ as default search engine (on Firefox, as it happens) for several months now. Works as well if not better than its more famous relatives, and, importantly, keeps no search history or leak search keywords.
No money in it for Mozilla, though...
have to use Bing for search in FF.
Bing can be removed from the search list.
I see no problem other than having to perform several mouse clicks in order to remove Bing and add Scroogle.
If this move helps Mozilla to support its operations financially at the expense of MS, that's fine with me.
If Firefox is to become financially less dependent upon Google's money, it becomes incumbent upon it to act as if it were a financially independent entity, and avoid accusations of deliberately limiting competition. As an commercial corporation under law (and maker of the second most commonly-used desktop browser in the world) for it to be deliberately not-making reference to Bing could, potentially, have become a matter of litigation.
Microsoft, in its present mood would not have sued, but a lot of the litigation that could take place, in this world, between companies, does not through choice of those companies themselves. Folks can, and do, change their minds, however, and suddenly retrospectively sue, for the actions of another company, based on what they did several years ago, and how it is alleged to have influenced the way other things turned out later on. If things do not go well for Bing (and there is very little reason to suppose that they will, based on past performance) Microsoft's mood could turn very foul, very fast.
Both Google and Bing are rather good at returning relevant results and both engines require huge and expensive infrastructures to make this happen (paid for by advertisers, the information we provide and companies wishing to know more about their customers).
Monopolies are generally a bad idea and competition helps encourage the big-guys to concentrate and play nice (think IE6). Hopefully Bing will encourage Google in this respect and Mozilla's inclusion of Bing can only help this process.
We can dream of a Mozilla-type native total privacy-protected search engine but making this happen and break-even would be a much more difficult task than producing Firefox itself.
Still, it's nice to dream.
"Though this is not addressed in the blog post, Mozilla has signed a financial agreement with Microsoft. "The arrangement includes revenue-sharing based on traffic sent from Firefox to Bing's search service,""
What ? You mean the Mozilla foundation takes MONEY??? It doesn't run on unicorn tears ? Well fuck me sideways, who knew ? And I mean it's one thing to take money from the worlds largest meat targeting company, but Microsoft ? THAT'S JUST SICK !!!!!!!!
Offering choice is good, even though Bing is not usually better than Google. I use it occasionally because it gives different results.
The only things Bing is better at is maps. Probably because MS has been doing that for a long time with their old Streets product. Bing maps are nicer than Yahoo or Google's.
It offers choice to the user and helps diversify (potentially anyway) the revenue stream. If Google revenue drops (for whatever reason) then Bing users can mitigate the damage. I doubt they will replace it entirely.
I don't use Bing or Yahoo. M$ running around trying to buy business is disgusting. Advertise it, let people use it, get feedback and improve it as required. People will let you know if your service is any good.
I hope Mozilla read all the fine print in their contract with Redmond because they've just broken Rule #1: Don't do business with M$.
Lest we forget that Microsoft paid AOL almost $750 million to have AOL drop the antitrust suit against Microsoft and allow Microsoft to continue its illegal practices. No doubt Mozilla saw some of that. And I doubt that the current deal even approaches a billion dollars.
Microsoft is good as spending money to continue illegal practices designed to restrict consumer choice and use of technology.
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