CPS 49S Freshman Seminar
Google: The Computer Science Within and its Impact on Society

Course information
Outline of topics
Schedule and notes

Recommended TextBook

  • The Search: How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture. By John Battelle. September, 2005. Portfolio Trade. Paperback version available. Insightful and comprehensive book on the applications and impact of Web-search technology.

Books for Reference

Research publications


  • Internet Penetration and Impact. Published by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, April, 2006. Presents facts and analysis of Internet penetration in the U.S.
  • Data Memo on Search Engines. Published by the Pew Internet and American Life Project, October, 2004. Presents facts about the use of search engines by online Americans.
  • A Taxonomy of Web Search. By Andrei Broder. Published in the ACM SIGIR Forum, Volume 36, 2002. An analysis of log data from the Altavista search engine.

Sample articles from the popular press

  • How good is Google? Published in The Economist, October, 2003. Discusses how Google has become a cultural phenomenon and where it is headed.
  • Seeking Better Web Searches. Published in the Scientific American, February 2005. Discusses new trends in Web search technology, e.g., personalization.
  • University Presses Question Google's Library Digitization Effort. Published in the MIT Technology Review, November, 2005. Discusses Google's plan to scan the text of millions of library books and make the material searchable online.
Shivnath Babu 2007.