humanity chooses more than an existence of mere survival

I read something on Reddit that I thought was awesome. So awesome I wanted to place it into my random thoughts category. The backdrop of the story was someone sharing an article about space and time, and being closer to exploring other galaxies – but I tl;dr’d that. It was a response to this comment that was really awesome.:

Is this really something a regular guy working hard to eek out his existence REALLY needs to know or is it just something you physics types get all tingly in your underpants about?

Imagine you woke up naked in a field, in the middle of nowhere. You have no idea where you are, or how you got there. What do you do? First, you’d probably go into survival mode; you’d look for the basic necessities to sustain life: water, food, and shelter from the elements.

Once you had everything you needed to stay alive, and you knew that, if nothing else, you could at least remain in your current location indefinitely, you might start to wonder what in the hell happened: one minute you’re bouncing around Reddit, the next you’re bare-ass in the middle of nowhere.

After you come to grips with the reality of the situation, you’d probably want to try and figure out where in the hell you are. You might try and look for clues from your environment or maybe a constellation you recognize, or perhaps you decide to do a little exploring around the immediate area, to see if there’s anything around that could give you some clue as to where in the hell you are.

Let’s say that your efforts reveal that you’re in the middle of Africa. Once you’ve figured out where you are, you only have two choices left: stay there and simply exist as long as you can, or attempt to get back to civilization; either option has it’s own risks.

If you chose to stay where you are, then that’s essentially it for you, you now know how your future will play out: you’ll remain at your current location until you either die of old age, or your area becomes unable to sustain life. Either way, the game is over for you; your entire existence becomes about survival, and you’re just running out the clock until, at some point in the future, you cease to exist.

Maybe you decide to try and leave a message for someone to find in the future, maybe you’re content to simply fade off into oblivion, either way, your fate is sealed.
Now let’s say you decided to try and get back to civilization. Since you know where you are, your logical next step is going to be to try and figure out someplace to go, and then of course, how to get there. Now you have a goal, something you’re striving towards. Life ceases to be about mere survival and becomes an epic journey to get you where you want to go.

This is the timeline of humanity. We woke up with nothing, on a little rock, in the middle of nowhere. We figured out how to survive, and we struggled to come to grips with our own reality. Then we started exploring, trying to find out just exactly where we were in the Universe. Now we’re faced with the same choice: exist, or move on.

You ask if it’s something that a “regular guy REALLY needs to know”, to me it’s the most important thing he/she needs to know: that humanity chooses more than an existence of mere survival. That humanity chooses to move forward and keep exploring and expanding. To know that, even though we might never make it, at least we’re making the effort. That we have hope.
The alternative is to simply run out the clock and wait to fade off into oblivion.
/u/Gekko_the_Great, a regular working man.

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Google's testing new SERP layout

So there’s been talk about a new interface Google is testing. It focuses on taking away the underline from their search result links and making the titles a little bit bigger. Above is an example of the new Google SERP page interface. (The left is me signed in, the right is incognito mode).

So I finally experienced it and I thought it would be helpful to list some of the changes I see:

changes

The Ad changes. This isn’t a new one but it’s still a difference. before google advertisements had a background a light beige color. Some fun facts – as Google’s ad program began to evolve the background color began to slowly become more translucent and harder to see (also depending on your OS and monitor) However after some legal actions and the law getting involved they were told to make them distinct ad’s. So their solution was more of a loophole in taking away the pretty much branded background color and making it a small “Ad” text with a prominent color. Ha.

No more underlines in Google SERPs. Well then. Cleaner display. I kinda like it. Doesn’t seem to change to much on the SEO front though. We’ll see how long it takes bing to change their fonts.

Bigger font on the title takes the highlight them on both the advertisements and natural search results. This is more interesting. It attracts the eye a little bit more and probably will require a call to action on each search result. We’ll see how this plays out

Less characters showing due to the bigger fonts on title tags. This will be interesting because most SEO’s try ot make the most out of their pages with their optimizedtags. The more interesting part about this though is

a new Google Mobile SERP display with bigger fonts Mobile devices already get the short of the stick on title tags in Google. With bigger fonts, this could descrease the length of the title tags even more than desktop. Leaving little room for a call to action or a long-tail keyword.

How does this affect Ecommerce SEO?

Ecommerce websites are very difficult to scale. So when Google changes their interface to lessen the character counts or change font sizes it could potentially throw a bunch of an SEO’s hard work out the door.

The problem with this is that there is a drop in a couple characters depending on the device you are using. This isn’t too big of a deal – but in rare, long-tail cases, this can kind of affect how your title tag looks.

A solution to this might be to remove call to actions in your title tags or better target your keywords for a little bit shorter tail key phrases. Me though? Keep things the way they are and trust that consumers can understand what our results mean and why they should click through 🙂

Conclusion

This isn’t going to affect SEO much so it doesn’t matter too much there. But it does make the page look much cleaner and more modernized. The biggest affect being the lost of a few characters on both mobile and desktop devices.

I would suggest keeping your current meta tag strategy going for now. Unless Google decides to slowly up their font to size 18 Arial. Then I would probably start using Bing. Oh please don’t let me use Bing.