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July 17, 2006

Resource-Intensive Google Queries

Google made a difference when produced search results in less than second. While that required a lot of parallel processing, the results compensated for the trouble.

Some of the resource-intensive queries are those that include advanced operators (like site:, inurl:). Other factors are: personalized search, OneBox results or strange queries that require access to the supplemental index.

In 1999, the average search took approximately 3 seconds. Now most of the searches take less than 0.4 seconds. But I could find a simple query that took 4.22 seconds, admittedly for the second page of results. I wonder what was the problem (it was something temporary, if I repeat the search - it takes 0.28 seconds). Can you find other resource-intensive Google queries?


  1. the reason the search is fast the second time around could be cache?

  2. Is this a joke? If you can't reproduce it, it's not a "resource-intensive" query. It was simply caused by a bigger CPU load at that time.

  3. You're probably right, but it's so rare that I thought it deserve to be mentioned.

  4. this query seems to take less than a second (0.32 sec):
    america -bush -early -library -bank -roadside -bbc -summit -toshiba -virtual -epson -oxfam -biography -economia -danmark -historic -television -geological -volksvagen -shape -recycles -teach -scouts -democracy -planned -public

    i guess such a query must take some CPU in order to be correct.. but it's nothing compared to what the google cluster can handle.

  5. Hey peeps,
    Just managed to rank up a massive 6.58 on the Goog'o'meter.
    Highscore board anyway?
    You probly wont get the same results cause the keyword has been cached on their own machines. But anywhoo,

  6. This must have been resource intensive on their spell checker.,GGLD:2006-20,GGLD:en

  7. Working in search engine, I can assure you that after a query is made once, it will stay in the cache for some time, and thus react much faster the next time.