Inverting the Web 

We use search engines because the Web does not support accessing documents by anything other than URL. This puts a huge amount of control in the hands of the search engine company and those who control the DNS hierarchy.

Given that search engine companies can barely keep up with the constant barrage of attacks, commonly known as "SEO". intended to lower the quality of their results, a distributed inverted index seems like it would be impossible to build.

@freakazoid What methods *other* than URL are you suggesting? Because it is imply a Universal Resource Locator (or Identifier, as URI).

Not all online content is social / personal. I'm not understanding your suggestion well enough to criticise it, but it seems to have some ... capacious holes.

My read is that search engines are a necessity born of no intrinsic indexing-and-forwarding capability which would render them unnecessary. THAT still has further issues (mostly around trust)...

@freakazoid ... and reputation.

But a mechanism in which:

1. Websites could self-index.
2. Indexes could be shared, aggregated, and forwarded.
4. Search could be distributed.
5. Auditing against false/misleading indexing was supported.
6. Original authorship / first-publication was known

... might disrupt things a tad.

Somewhat more:

NB: the reputation bits might build off social / netgraph models.

But yes, I've been thinking on this.

@dredmorbius This is not a fully fleshed out idea yet, but the "L" was the important bit. People generally don't care about the location of the content. They care about the content of the content, and other stuff about the content like the author, etc.

Just think about how people generally navigate the web these days. They don't type a URL into their addressbar or click a bookmark. They type a search query into their address bar, which will generally bring up Google results.

@dredmorbius So the question I want to answer is how do we enable that kind of navigation, or something similarly easy to understand, without giving a whole bunch of power to a single entity? How do we leverage people's existing trust networks, or existing reputable (generally topic-specific) databases to provide results with at least as good of quality as Google's?

@freakazoid @dredmorbius
The idea we had with xanadu is that, because links are part of an overlay instead of embedded, people would send each other packs of links between different documents, and you might subscribe to a themed feed of links the way you subscribe to an RSS feed or follow an account. It was supposed to be p2p but could be federated -- but doesn't work if overlay links don't work (i.e., if content is mutable or addresses are)

@enkiv2 Do you know / have you worked with Andrew Pam / Xanadu Australia?

I discovered his work w/ Xanadu in the closing months of G+.

@dredmorbius @enkiv2
Yeah. When I was working on xanadu he was maintaining the repos & shell access. I never worked closely with him, but I'm friendly enough with him & his wife.

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