Google has taken a few more steps in a latest development as part of its endeavor to make search functionality even more powerful and intelligent. It’s largely about understanding the user, putting all the information they need right at their fingertips, grasping their exact intent so as to meet the vision of Larry Page, according to whom the near-perfect search engine is the one that precisely follows what a surfer means and then giving back him or her what is required as a logical outcome.
Keeping this in mind, the search engine giant launched the insightful and intuitive Knowledge Graph in May – a vast database of not less than 500 million people, places, things and other aspects drawn from the real-world, with an astonishing 3.5 billion attributes and relevant connections among them.
The search engine will also employ this intelligence for helping users find the correct result more quickly even when their search may carry different meanings or connotations. For instance, if one searches for (rio), one might be wanting to know about the Brazilian city, the more recent animated movie or perhaps the casino located in Vegas. Now, thanks to Knowledge Graph, Google can give these different albeit relevant suggestions of all possible, connected real-world entities in search box as one types the search term.
Again the best reply to a user query is not always necessarily a single entity. It can be a group or list of multiple connected things. It’s challenging to pull all these lists from the web automatically. But the engine is starting to do just that! So when a user searches for say (hurricanes reported in 2008), (famous female astronomers), or (California lighthouses), it will display a list of these across the top of the results page. By blending the Knowledge Graph and the collective wisdom of Web, Google can offer more subjective lists, such as (best action films of the 2000s), or (things to do in London].
If a user clicks on any item, one can explore the results in depth on the Web. So far Google can come up with hundreds of thousands of such lists that involve millions of items. It will keep growing to meet users’ curiosity. Further providing details of the enhancements, the official post notes:
“Sometimes the best answer to your question isn’t available on the public web—it may be contained somewhere else, such as in your email. We think you shouldn’t have to be your own mini-search engine to find the most useful information—it should just work. A search is a search, and we want our results to be truly universal. So we’re developing a way to find this information for you that’s useful and unobtrusive, and we’d love your feedback.”
So Google is launching a limited trial where users can sign up to draw information from their Gmail from the search box itself. So if you are keen to take up a biking trip to say Tahoe, you might check relevant emails from your colleagues and friends about some of the best bike trails, or places to eat just on the right hand side of the relevant results page. And if it seems relevant, you can expand the box to see the emails.
If you carry a search for (my flights), Google will properly organize flight confirmation mails for an upcoming trip in an easy-to-read way on the results page.