I’m not what you would call a “web developer” but I do spend fair amount of time on the internet. Though the question might be basic, would you consider Google.com a search engine?
This seemingly simple question (thanks, Amanda) can help answer some very basic doubts that beginners have. Is Google.com a search engine or is it a web site?
Technically speaking, Google.com is simply a domain name that points to a web site. When you load this web address in a web browser, what you see is the famous Google page with familiar search query field which we all have used.
In addition to the home page, Google web site has sections just like other sites. For instance, the Google corporate web site – Google.com/corporate – has information on the company, its founders and business philosophy. The Google web site is presumably very large and hosts many services offered by the company. For example, the Google Trends service (www.google.com/trends) shows you how often a search term was used on the Google search engine.
Let us look at it from another angle. The page that loads in your web browser when you go to google.com is the web interface of the search engine. Its main function is to receive queries from the visitor and pass it to a program.
For simplicity and for the sake of easy ‘digestion’, we can consider the Google search engine to consist of the following:
Hence, what you see on google.com is a web page interface to the Google search engine. But will it be incorrect to refer to Google.com as a search engine? In technical circles… probably. But most will make allowances. If the word “google” can become a synonym for “search”, why should you bother with these finer details?
National Public Radio owns one of the shortest and probably the most memorable domain hacks - http://n.pr. It uses the ccTLD of Puerto Rico. [more...]