Feeds

Google Instant sinks raft of search controls

Suggest forever on, results locked at 10

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

In rolling out Google Instant – a new incarnation of its search engine that serves up results in "real-time" as you type – Mountain View has also made several peripheral changes to the way its engine traditionally operates.

Following the arrival of Google Instant, the Google Operating System blog – a third-party blog not affiliated with Google – compiled a list of such changes, and Google has confirmed most of them with The Reg.

"Google Instant is a significant improvement to search and required a number of minor changes on the homepage and results page," a company spokesman tells us. "Overall, we think people will really enjoy the new experience."

Most notably, with Google Instant, you can no longer change the number of results that appear on a page. The number of results is always set to ten. No doubt, this is an effort to maintain the speed of the new service – and keep it from overloading the Google's back-end. At least one Reg reader assumed this was a bug, but it's a feature. If you turn off Google Instant, however, you can once again customize the number of results per page.

Second, you can no longer disable Google Suggest – the tool that suggests other searches based on what you type. Google Instant dovetails with Google Suggest, but even if you turn off Instant, you can't turn off Suggest.

Google Instant with Suggest

Incidentally, Google has also capped the number of Google Suggest suggestions at five. In the past, you may have seen more. The Google Operating System blog also said that Suggest was no longer proposing results based on your search history, and though this is currently true, Google says it will soon be changed.

Google has also killed its "fade-in" homepage – which was rolled out just months ago. The page would hide most of its hyperlinks until you actually moved your mouse, but for reasons unknown, Google has returned to a setup where the links appear immediately.

What's more, when serving result pages, Google has removed the search box that used to appear at the bottom of the page. To change a query, you have to scroll back to the top of the page.

The Google Operating System blog also claimed that Google had done away with its Wonder Wheel search visualization tool. But this is not the case. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Hey, Scots. Microsoft's Bing thinks you'll vote NO to independence
World's top Google-finding website calls it for the UK
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Apple CEO Tim Cook: TV is TERRIBLE and stuck in the 1970s
The iKing thinks telly is far too fiddly and ugly – basically, iTunes
Israeli spies rebel over mass-snooping on innocent Palestinians
'Disciplinary treatment will be sharp and clear' vow spy-chiefs
Huawei ditches new Windows Phone mobe plans, blames poor sales
Giganto mobe firm slams door shut on Microsoft. OH DEAR
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
OECD lashes out at tax avoiding globocorps' location-flipping antics
You hear that, Amazon, Google, Microsoft et al?
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Security and trust: The backbone of doing business over the internet
Explores the current state of website security and the contributions Symantec is making to help organizations protect critical data and build trust with customers.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.