Thursday, 15th June 2006
Google's New USGov.Google vs. Google Uncle Sam
For many years (late 1990's) Google has offered Google Uncle Sam, a site that offered a restricted version of their database focusing on .gov and .mil sites. Today, the Washington Post reports that Google will introduce http://usgov.google.com. This page explains what's in the database (including .mil sites, state sites, etc.)
A closer look at the url from USGOV.Google search results page shows that what you're actually searching is the restricted Uncle Sam database. So, what's exactly new (except for the personalization options, documentation (something Uncle Sam never offered, so that's a positive) and perhaps an increased crawl?) is TBD. Even the results page logo is the same as what's found on Uncle Sam. Results pages also include advertising.
1) "War in Iraq"
Uncle Sam= 220,000
2) California Highway Patrol Orange County
3) Vermont schools leadership
So, it looks like the actual results from the new service are the same or very similar to what Google Uncle Sam delivers. Btw, Uncle Sam remains online. The new site also offers homepage personalization options.
In many respects this is another round in the Google vs. MS search war. The new FirstGovSearch (also available in Spanish) which relaunched in February is powered by a Microsoft database in conjunction with the dynamic clustering and several specialty databases built and maintained by Vivisimo. Here's an overview of FirstGovSearch from back on launch day.