An unofficial blog that watches Google's attempts to move your operating system online since 2005. Not affiliated with Google.

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November 3, 2007

Google Indexes Videos from All Over the Web

Google Video goes beyond indexing videos hosted by sites like YouTube or Metacafe and starts to add videos from all over the web. Unfortunately, Google doesn't convert the videos from AVI, WMV, MOV or MPEG to FLV so they can be played online, because it's probably illegal to host content without permission*. Instead, Google links directly to the videos, doesn't mention a list of pages that could provide some context and doesn't warn you that the video can't be played online.

For now, there aren't too many non-Flash videos indexed by Google: .edu sites and NASA seem to have priority.

* Caching web pages is a notable exception


And here's an excerpt from a web page that link to the AVI (the fourth search result). Google doesn't link to this page, but you can find it using a normal Google search:


Other video search engines, like Live Search and Yahoo Video, already include videos from the web, but none of them figured out how to get information about videos, rank them and present them properly. And Google Video is no exception, considering that YouTube dominates the search results for almost any query and that the ranking algorithms use information about the number of views and ratings, which is only available for some video hosting sites.

This blog is not affiliated with Google.