Google Explains How Search Works, Complete With Live Spam Slideshow

Google today updated its Inside Search site, its homepage for all things search, with a handful of educational and interactive features that explain in layman’s terms how Google’s Search works. Did you know the web had over 30 trillion pages, by the way? Or that Google supports over 100 billion searches every month? Or that Google’s index is over 100 million gigabytes? If you find factoids like that interesting, you’ll probably enjoying a scroll through the new “How Search Works” live infographic, which also contains a few clickable links to charts and graphs showing things like the rise of spam, and milestones in Google’s spam-fighting techniques, among other things.

The update is something of a follow-up to last year’s detailed look into how Gmail works called The Story of Send. For the most part, it’s really high-level stuff here, designed to make the details of technology approachable and understandable to a more mainstream audience looking to gain a better understanding of what happens after they type into the search box.

The new sections of the site include not only the graphical explanation of Google Search’s inner workings, but also details about Google’s major algorithms and features, a list of Google policies, plus a 43-page document that explains how Google evaluates its results. (OK, that part might be a little more in-depth, I’ll admit.)

But the best part? The live spam slideshow. Here, you can see screenshots of spam Google has removed from its search results only¬†minutes¬†ago. Dozens upon dozens of them, in fact. It’s almost like getting a real-time view into Google itself, which is actually pretty fascinating.


Now if only we could see what people were googling for in real-time, we would really….wait…

Nah, that might be terrifying.