With the recent hoo-haa over PageRank over the past week or so, I’ve read so many stories, conspiracy theories and downright nonsense about the algorithm behind that little green bar. But what do we really know about this thing that causes so many webmasters to lose sleep and bloggers to wail that they’re going to lose their online revenue?
Fact 1: PageRank is not assigned to a domain, but specific pages
When was the last time you heard this phrase; “I have a PR5 blog.”
Personally, I’ve heard (and read) similar phrases thousands of times over the past five years or so. The thing is, it’s not totally accurate!
PR is assigned not to domains but individual pages. Let’s take HTNet (this blog you’re reading) for example. At the time of this post, it has a PR5 front page. However, it also has this page; Single Bookmark Category List Widget 2.0 Released, which is also PR5. On the other hand, this page; Do Not Use Hong Leong Credit Cards!, is a PR3.
So as you can see, the PR value fluctuates from page to page and not specific to domains. So the next time you hear someone mention anything about owning a PR-whatever web site, kindly correct his/her misrepresentation.
Fact 2: The PageRank algorithm patent does not belong to Google, Inc.
PageRank is the heart of Google’s search technology. Therefore, most people unsurprisingly assume that Google must surely own the patent to this technology.
The fact is, the PageRank patent is assigned to Stanford University (patent no. 6,285,999) – not Google, Inc.!
So the next time someone mentions something about Google owning the PageRank algorithm, you can explain to the person that that is not technically correct. For added effect, you might as well point them to this page 🙂
Fact 3: PageRank is not named as such because it ranks pages
You might think that I’m joking here… but I’m dead serious!
The term PageRank is named after its inventor, Larry Page, and not because its page ranking functions.
This goes to show that PR is so entrenched as a “search engine term” that more often than not, a lot of misconceptions are made about it… even how it got its name!
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