Growth5 Blog

Friday, March 27, 2009

Google Adds Context to Search

Google has added context to search using semantic technology.

In the past, whatever words you entered in the Google search window were literally just looked for across the web. Google's success in search has relied on having the best algorithm to order the display results from the thousands of sites that contained the words you were searching for. Google never thought about the meaning of your keywords, they just found them and organized them for you.

Now, the Google search engine will be thinking about the meaning of the words you are searching for and will be displaying contextual results intermingled with keyword results.

PC World covered the Google announcement:

"The new technology will allow Google's search engine to identify associations and concepts related to a query, improving the list of related search terms Google displays along with its results, the company announced in an official blog.

For example, if you search for 'principles of physics', our algorithms understand that 'angular momentum,' 'special relativity,' 'big bang' and 'quantum mechanic' are related terms that could help you find what you need," wrote Ori Allon, technical lead of Google's Search Quality team, and Ken Wilder, team engineer at the company's Snippets project...

There is an entire field of Google competitors that are busy developing and perfecting semantic search engines, betting that they will be able to deliver on the promise of this technology: to let users type in queries in natural language and have the search engine understand their meaning and intent.

Microsoft last year acquired Powerset, one of these companies, in order to improve its Web search engine with semantic search technology.

Google also rolled out on Tuesday another enhancement to its search engine: longer "snippets," which are the text excerpts Google extracts from Web sites to show in search results where the query keywords appear."

Further coverage:
PC Magazine
Information Week

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