Not binging on Bing

I’m a search engine agnostic. No expertise whatever, and no real preference.

I don’t even remember when I started using Google… probably when I discovered Opera the first time. Since then, my favorite browsers default to Google. (Opera, Firefox, the new Safari). So when Bing came out, I tried a couple of searches. I did a quick comparison… I took note of the attractive design of Bing. But I went back to Google. I liked the results better.

Fast forward two months. Bing’s inching up…If you pick the right day, Bing plus Yahoo together might be at 20%.  The media are all atwitter about it. So… I tried it again. (Not that I care about who’s bigger. I’m really just interested in which, if any, is better at helping me do my work).

This time, I did a real search for something I needed to find. Aerial videography purveyors in Los Angeles. Especially one in particular that I worked with in the past, who used a P-38 (or was it a P-58) with bombay doors to get gyro-stabilized images, and cover a lot more ground a lot faster, without as much vibration, as a helicopter could do.

So I tried several variations of search terms, and ran them in both Bing and Google. I discovered the — I don’t know what to call it — hover feature of Bing that lets you drill a little deeper into the result by rolling the mouse over it. I like that. But in every case, I liked the Google relevance much better. Here’s the last try, with the best search terms I came up with…. but the contrasts I note here were similar in every case.

TestBing

I like that Bing lists all my recent searches, though Google does that as a drop down when I start another search. Bing doesn’t show any paid advertising on these pages, though… which in this case are just as helpful. Out of the 10 things on the first page, only 3 are actual aerial videographers, (results 5, 6, and 8.) … and all of them are not true aerial documentarians, but wedding videographers.

Here’s the Google page with the same search criteria:

TestGoogle

The Google results were quite useful to me. At the top are 3 ad-based responses, all from leading companies who do aerial work in LA. To the right are 8 sponsored ads, 4 of which are from companies that do aerial videography in LA.

Most importantly, the non-sponsored results of searching the web produce 10 first-page listings, 8 of which are either working videographers or stock footage houses with LA aerial shots to sell. The other 2 deal with scientific aerial survey instruments or methodologies.

So for now, I don’t expect to start binging on Bing. With this one isolated finger to the wind, it feels to me like Google is not just bigger at search… they’re also better.

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2 Responses

  1. not a new article (from Dec. of 2008), but somewhat relevant to your search-engine comparison… I found this to be pretty interesting:
    http://www.slate.com/id/2206973/pagenum/all/

    and I also just found this:
    http://tech.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=08/10/14/1645227

    it’s interesting to note how our internet usage has so drastically evolved in just a few years.

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