Further to our previous news piece on the new Google search algorithm…
Google have announced plans for the biggest search engine overhauls in the company’s history that aims to not only provide web links to enquiries, but genuinely understand customer questions and give intelligent ‘answers.’
As Google face increasing competition from products like Apple’s Siri application and indomitable rise of Twitter, they are making efforts to retain their market dominance by staying at least five steps ahead of the game.
This new makeover will try to tackle the shortcomings of modern search engines and use “semantic search technology” that will be able to understand the relationships between words and the nuances of language to intelligently understand what users are searching for and present more intuitive results. It means Google search results will provide more answers to queries as opposed to just a list of blue links of varying reliability.
Amit Singhal explained that Google is moving closer towards “how humans understand the world.” For example a search for Mount Snowdon won’t just provide links to the national park’s website, but it will present users with ‘key attributes’ that Google knows such as the mountain’s location, height and weather information. For more detailed questions Google will comprehend the semantics to understand the question and search not only for the inclusion of key words, but employ semantic search technology to recognise the value and relevance of what’s been written.
This could mean dramatic improvements to customer service, as improving Google’s ability to filter the range of irrelevant websites that might include key words.
So Google can now intelligently understand what we mean and answer back, is this a step closer to how AI robots might be able to communicate with humans?
Danny Hillis, an artificial intelligence expert says this is promising, one of the defining features of humanity is the capacity to comprehend language with all the subtleties and ambiguities and Google will soon be able to do this. Although Google will still lack the other defining features of intelligence such as having personal goals, reasoning and the ability to make inferences, Google’s semantic knowledge is still a major leap forwards in computers capacities to mimic the human mind.
So, against vigorous competition from the charismatic Siri, Google are answering ingeniously by updating an already comprehensive search engine with one of genuine semantic intuition.