In March, one of the more interesting patent filings from Google was granted, Information retrieval based on historical data.
I had discussed it on forums when the original patent application came out in March of 2005, but didn’t provide a write up of the document here. I realized a few weeks ago that I probably should.
The historical data patent is important because it discusses a large number of techniques that a search engine might use in fighting “spamming techniques” that might artifically “inflate” the rankings of web sites, and it works to identify “stale” sites that may be ranked higher than fresher sites that might contain more recently updated information.
I’ll be writing a few posts over the next few weeks about the patent, and try to include some updates that have happened since it was first published. This first post looks at how the “freshness” of a page or document might influence its rankings in search results.