Metaweb Could Revolutionize Google Search

Dan Nosowitz from Fast Company has a great post on the recent purchase of Metaweb by Google.


Nosowitz points out that Google acquires companies all the time, little startups with a bit of helpful technology or a  nice patent or a few engineers Google wants. But the acquisition of  Metaweb should not be grouped in with those relatively small other  purchases: Metaweb's technology could change the way Google Search  works.



Metaweb is a hard concept to describe, although the video above does an admirable job. Essentially, it views keywords, the way we search now, as an inferior search method to what it calls “entities.” Words can vary in meaning, refer to different things, have different levels of importance or relevance at different times, and often return inexact results.


Once Metaweb figures out to which entity you’re referring, it can provide a set of results. It can even combine entities for more complex searches–”actresses over 40″ might be one entity, “actresses living in New York City” might be another, and “actresses with a movie currently playing” might be another. Instead of searching through that jumble of keywords, Metaweb would just connect you to those three entities, and file down your results.



You can see why Google would see value in Metaweb. In a recent blog post, Google said searches like the example above are “hard questions, and we’ve acquired Metaweb because we believe working together we’ll be able to provide better answers.” Hopefully that means Google can integrate Metaweb’s technology into their own search functions smoothly.


Google will also keep Freebase, the database that provides Metaweb with its list of “entities,” alive and open:

Better yet, we plan to contribute to and further develop Freebase and would be delighted if other web companies use and contribute to the data. We believe that by improving Freebase, it will be a tremendous resource to make the web richer for everyone. And to the extent the web becomes a better place, this is good for webmasters and good for users.


This is great news for everyone. Just think about the time that could be saved searching online.


What do you think of Metaweb’s re-imagined search methods?


Read Dan Nosowitz’s full post at Fast Company.

Posted via email from Neville's Blog

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