Instead I had to go to www.google.com.
But I did not get the usual mostly empty page with a box in which to type my search query: instead I got a multi-panel web page with all sorts of junk in it -- London tube map, weather reports, news headlines, advertisements, lists of links of various sorts, and worst of all a panel inviting me to visit a horoscope site.
It announced itself as 'iGoogle', something I had never heard of, and a panel came up saying I had been chosen to try out iGoogle and inviting me to fill in a questionaire.
I did not come to it.The question: Typically, how often do you visit iGoogle?
It came to me while I was trying to use google search and I was EXTREMELY annoyed
(a) because the google search panel on firefox stopped working so that I had to explicitly invoke google and then type in my search command, while lots of unwanted junk appeared on my screen
(b) because I have no interest in turning google into some sort of general purpose interface to the universe.
I use google search a lot and google news occasionally. I don't want news or anything else to be shoved in my face when I simply want to answer a search question.
The rest of the page was sheer junk. Why should I want a London tube map when I live in Birmingham? Why should I care about how yoga people do headstands. Why give me a sports panel when I am not interested in sports.
Above all it is utterly APPALLING that google panders to the superstitious idiocy of the uneducated masses by presenting a panel about horoscopes. Either you are very patronising or else you have very low intellectual standards and take that stuff seriously yourself.
Now I have to find out how to turn off this junk. Maybe I should just use another search engine.
Should have an answer option: I NEVER WANT TO VISIT IT.Two more questions
Likewise the question: When did you first use iGoogle?
should have an option: i did not visit it: it was inflicted on me.
What if anything do you find frustrating or unappealing about iGoogle?My answers:
What changes or additional features would you like to see for iGoogle?
I don't want to see it at all.One of the very worst features was that there was nothing on the page telling me how to restore the previous state.
I have no interest in something that chooses a collection of web resources for me and shoves them in my face when I want to do something else.
I can use my own bookmarks and shortcuts to get directly to sites that interest me.
I also usually keep multiple tabs and windows live in firefox as an extension to my short term memory (especially since I can restore them after a crash or reboot).
Normally I don't reboot because I use SWSUSP2 on Linux instead.
I eventually managed to restore normal google function as a result
of sequence of semi-random experiments.
Unfortunately, I don't recall exactly what I did, so I cannot help other users.
School of Computer Science
The University of Birmingham
Date: 28 Jul 2008