Tuesday, August 08, 2006

AOL Search Results Published

AOL recently published the search results of random users over a three month period. The AOL search results contain approximately 2 gigs of data. Here is the READ ME and one of the search result files released from AOL. In total there are 10 files of search results. The file I posted contains 3,558,412 lines of text, so it gives a good indication of the typical online searches. I found it very interesting to see what other people are searching for online.

I performed a some basic parsing of the file to determine the number of users who searched for certain key words. One thing that I found very surprising is the number of people using AOL who searched for common web sites through the search engine, instead of typing in the URL directly. For example, there were thousands of searches for google.com, myspace.com, yahoo.com, msn.com and aol.com. I don't understand why a person who knows the domain name for a site would use a search engine. Also, if I was already using AOL why would I need to search for AOL.

Another thing I found interesting is the large number of people who searched for porn through AOL. These are some of the random results I found of people looking for porn: "old lady gives doctor handjob", "pics of my ex", "youngorgy", "sex poetry", "female escorts for couple", and "bathroom sex mpegs". That is only a small sample of the search results for porn. It is hard to believe that so many people search for such obscure subjects. It is probably safe to say that many of the people I come in contact with daily are also looking for such subjects when they use the Internet.

I found it very surprising that very few users search for technical topics with AOL. I found few results of people looking for information on programming languages or operating systems. For example, a very small percentage of AOL users searched for information on Linux. I would have thought that more people would have searched for computer related topics through the search engine. I think much of it may be due to user community of AOL. If on the other hand, Google published their search results I think there would be more searches for technical related material.

A final note is that many of the people who search with AOL have very bad spelling. I noticed many of the searches have the words misspelled.


Post a Comment

<< Home