November 1st, 2006 - by Golgotha

What is the PageRank Decoder?
The PageRank Decoder allows you to visually see how Google factors PageRank based off of link structure. Be sure to view the Demo first.

What’s it good for?
You can examine different link topologies and see how PageRank is passed amongst pages. This allows you to see if your websites link structure is as optimized as possible.

How should I start?
I would recommend that you start by adding a bunch of pages to the canvas and then start interlinking them – then hit the calculate button and hover over the toolbars for their PR value. This allows you to see how different link topologies pass PR.

Later, for fun you can start looking up pages by entering in their URL in the textbox.

How does it work?
You should start by reading the article, “Google’s PageRank Explained.” Once you have a firm understanding of the article you will have a better understanding of how the PageRank Decoder is working.

Is this thing really accurate?
Yes and no?

To calculate the PageRank for a page, we use Google’s original formula:

PR(A) = (1-d) + d(PR(t1)/C(t1) + … + PR(tn)/C(tn))

If the above code looks foreign to you and you have never seen this formula before, then start by reading, “Google’s PageRank Explained”.

It’s accurate if all pages start with a PageRank of 0. If you looked up a page or set a page’s PR at something other than 0 it can mess up the formula. This is because that page now starts off with a PR other than 0 and that then gets compounded in the formula.

Google doesn’t do this; they start all pages at 0 (or rather 0.15) and then run their formula for each page factoring all incoming links. Google’s database exceeds a million pages and for each page they look at its incoming links, some pages may have well over 1000 incoming links. It takes Google somewhere around a month to update all pages.

The PageRank Decoder is not working with a database to track incoming links for a page; rather it just looks at what’s on the canvas. So instead the PageRank Decoder allows you to artificially set a page’s PR.

I thought a ranking can’t go beyond 10?
Remember, there’s a difference between PageRank score and the toolbar-shown PageRank. The toolbar has a max score of 10. I don’t know Google’s scale when setting the PageRank in the toolbar so it gets inflated quickly.

5 Responses to “PageRank Decoder Support”

1 Rostislav Siryk

Very useful tool. The funny thing about this pagerank decoder is that it is possible to get PR greater than 10 in some combinations.

For example, when page A with PR=7 refers to page with PR=0 and page B (PR=6) refers to page C too, then PR of page C becomes nearly 12 which is nearly impossible. However, tool is very good because gives adequate results for most of the real-life cases.

2 Golgotha

It’s accurate if all pages start with a PageRank of 0. If you looked up a page or set a page’s PR at something other than 0 it can mess up the formula. This is because that page now starts off with a PR other than 0 and that then gets compounded in the formula.

Google doesn’t do this; they start all pages at 0 (or rather 0.15) and then run their formula for each page factoring all incoming links.

3 Flash Ripper

Sorry for my pretty stupid first question. I understood your algorithm better now )

4 Martin

Very useful tool. I learned a lot how the pagerank value is calculated. What search engine are today using the Hub & Authority methods?

5 nick

Why is the url field not present in the decoder? I really wanted to punch in some urls and see how it deals with them.

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