I'M FEELING LUCKY
Everybody must have noticed the 'I'm Feeling Lucky' button adjacent to the 'Google Search' button in the Google Web search home page (Also, at least, few of you might have noticed a link with the same name in my blog page, the clicking on which takes the user to some RANDOM POST in the blog).
A blog claims that the IFL button is named after Clint Eastwood's line in the movie 'Dirty Harry' - "Do you feel lucky, punk? Well, do you?". That doesn't matter. The idea is if a user is "feeling lucky", the search engine will return the perfect match the first time without having to go through the search results.
Usually, when any key phrase is typed in the search field and "Google Serach" button is clicked (or enter key is pressed), Google returns a results page that shows multiple Web sites matching the search phrase. This is a very much common behaviour that every web user encounters at least once a day.
IFL button is a comic cum adventurous alternative. In stead of using 'Google Serach' button, if the IFL button is clicked, Google bypasses the search engine results page and goes directly to the first ranked page for that search phrase. Google toolbar, Picassa and Google bombs also make use of this button.
Google cofounder Sergey Brin says "Around 1% of all Google searches go through the 'I'm Feeling Lucky' button. Because the button takes users directly to the top search result, Google doesn't get to show search ads on those searches". Tom Chavez of "Rapt" estimated that this costs the company around $110 million in annual revenue.
Then why do they still keep such a costly button? Marissa Mayer, an executive in Google explains "It's possible to become too dry, too corporate, too much about making money. I think what's delightful about 'I'm Feeling Lucky' is that it reminds you there are real people here". A pretty damn ambitious goal.
In many cases, the IFL button takes the user to the Wikipedia page of the search word and that doesn't wonder me (If I want to read about something in Wikipedia, I will use google search instead of Wiki search to reach it). There were fuming stories (or jokes) floating around in early 2007, that Google's IFL Button to be renamed as "Wikipeda Result" Button.
I tested this button with the phrases like "microsoft", "anna university", "pop smita" etc. and the Google took me to the respective home pages correctly (But when I entered "writercsk" in the field and pressed the IFL button, in stead of showing my blog page, unfortunately, its going to "BlogAdda" description of writercsk.com).
Aprart from this testing, I never used this button for my search activities as I never felt I am lucky. I never believe in it too.