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Friday, April 19, 2024

8 Googler Alternatives To Superstar Matt Cutts

If the search engine optimization world has a rock star, ironically the king isn’t an actual SEO but rather mild mannered Matt Cutts of Google. His
title of software engineer belies his role as spam czar from Google. If Google’s web search results are a castle constantly under siege, Matt Cutts is the one high on the walls, swinging his sword and calling to his fellow Googlers to repel the attackers with hot oil of site expulsions and link downgrades.

Of course, not all site owners and SEOers are trying to bring down the Google castle. Many of them are hard working villagers that want the protection of the castle but can’t figure why they aren’t allowed in past the gates. As a benevolent lord of the castle, Matt seeks to help. In fact, even to the so called enemies he’ll reach out, similar to the famous Christmas Truce of 1914, as he’s written.

As a result, everyone wants to talk to Matt. Here he is at the Google Dance, held at Google during SES San Jose last August:

Matt Cutts

As he went to get something to eat, a pack of fans — which I nicknamed Cuttletts some time ago — followed him wherever he went.

The man quite simply gets swarmed wherever he goes. And that leads to the point of this post, best illustrated with a compare-and-contrast photo:

Vanessa Fox

Sitting over there on the left is Googler Vanessa Fox. She’s at the opposite end of the same stage where Matt is being swarmed. If the stage were a ship, all the passengers that ran over to talk with Matt would have been tilting it to dangerously low on their side, while Vanessa’s side would be high in the air.

That’s a lost opportunity. Vanessa, product manager of Google Webmaster Central, knows tons that will help site owners and SEOs. So do many other Googlers who make it out to conferences. That’s the reason for this post, to introduce people to Googlers they should seek out in addition to or as an alternative to Matt.

Want to know more about Matt? See this nice interview of him last year at Google Blogoscoped, this list of 20 trivia facts about him or read
Matt’s blog. Want to know more about the other Googlers? Let’s meet them!

Amanda Camp

Amanda Camp
Position: Tech Lead, Google Webmaster Tools
Location: Googleplex Kirkland (Seattle)
Hails From: Tuscon, Arizona
Musical Talent: Plays the trumpet
Favorite Movie: Ghost
Favorite Book: Matilda
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Google Calculator, uses for her taxes
Favorite http code: 308 (not yet defined)
Favorite Drinkbait: Bailey’s & Coffee
If Google Were A Superhero, It Would Be: Inspector Gadget
Her Super Power:

Dan Crow

Dan Crow
Position: Product Manager
Location: Googleplex New York
Hails From: Oxford, England
SES Chicago 2006 Sessions:
Musical Talent: Absolutely none
Favorite Movie:  Dr. Strangelove
Favorite Book: Atonement by Ian McEwan
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Google Docs (aka Writely)
Favorite http code: 406 Not Acceptable
Favorite Drink: Theakston’s Old Peculier
If Google Were A Superhero, It Would Be: Justice League of America
Unusual Trivia Fact:
Has eaten crocodile, considers it too rubbery

Trevor Foucher

Trevor Foucher
Position: Engineer, webmaster tools
Location: Googleplex Kirkland (Seattle)
Hails From: Anaheim, California
Favorite Movie: Groundhog Day
Favorite Book: Ender’s Game
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Gmail
Favorite http code: 200 OK (who wouldn’t like OK?!)
Favorite Drink: Rum & Diet Coke
First Computer: ZX81
Unusual Trivia Fact: His wife is a stand up comedian who also plays the banjo

Vanessa Fox

Vanessa Fox
Position: Product Manager, Webmaster Central
Location: Googleplex Kirkland (Seattle)
Hails From: California
Musical Talent: Flute and very bad singing
Favorite Movie: Breakfast at Tiffany’s
Favorite Book: Favorite book is very difficult. Maybe the Chronicles of Narnia. Which is more than one book. But you can get them as a set. So it counts. Because I said so.
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Google SMS
Favorite http code: 203 – shifty content
Favorite Drink: Margaritas with good tequila
Unusual Trivia Fact: Have run a Buffy site and a couple of Buffy message boards for years.

Adam Lasnik

Adam Lasnik
Position: Search Evangelist
Location: Googleplex Mountain View, the MotherPlex
Hails From: Thousand Oaks, California
Musical Talent: I’ve played piano since age 4.  Dabbled in orchestra conducting.  Done arrangements for vocal groups and a jazz band.  I have perfect pitch which is both a blessing and a curse.
Favorite Music: A cappella!
Favorite Book: Books? Like things with lots of paper…but not for school? Such a sadly distant memory! Can I just claim a oldie-but-goodie
Favorite on Asimov’s stuff on the whole?
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search:
G-Implant. Oh, er, I’m only supposed to choose something that’s PUBLIC, right? Um, then I’d have to say GMail, absolutely a Godsend for dealing with large amounts of mail…and finding the actual important stuff fast!
Favorite http code: 302 Found. I mean, heck, it just gives me warm fuzzies. ’twas lost and now it’s found. Who can argue with
Favorite Drink: When I’m not at webmaster events: Mojitos and Caipirinhas. Also wine, especially red. Not beer though. This did not go over well during my year in Germany.
First Computer: Apple II+
If Google Were A Superhero, It Would Be: Mighty Geek! Leaps tall server racks in a single bound. Saves small children. Has a sensitive side that not many see.

Maile Ohye

Maile Ohye
Position: Developer Support Engineer
Googleplex Mountain View, the MotherPlex
Hails From:
Cupertino, California
Musical Talent: Sings badly
Favorite Movie: She prefers TV, Oprah and NFL live
Favorite Book: Only reads non-fiction books about death
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Google Calendar
Favorite http code: 200 -Success is always nice
Favorite Drink: Mojito
Unusual Trivia Fact: Went to college on field hockey scholarship. Reads books about death (non-fiction). Can make a more meaningful life by leaning about death (reverse engineering)

Evan Roseman
Position: Software Engineer
Location: Googleplex Mountain View, the MotherPlex
Hails From:
Birmingham, Alabama
Musical Talent: Plays Trombone
Favorite Movie: Airplane!
Favorite Book: 1984
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search: Gmail
Favorite http code: 410 gone
Favorite Drink: Jones Soda
If Google Were A Superhero, It Would Be: Batman

Jonathan Simon
Position: Webmaster Trends Analyst (track what webmasters are worried about on forums, blogs, etc. See more here).
Location: Googleplex Kirkland (Seattle)
Hails From: Louisiana
Musical Talent: Plays guitar — writes his own songs and sings!
Favorite Movie: Little Big Men
Favorite Book: Jitterbug Perfume
Favorite Google Product Other Than Search:  Google Maps
Favorite http code: 200 OK
Favorite Drink: Greyhound or Patron, straight up

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