Google today unveiled the Knowledge Graph; a significant revamp of its search engine, with the hope of creating a ‘more human’ search experience.
In an official blog post Google’s senior vice president of engineering, Amit Singhal, introduced the Knowledge Graph as a way to offer instant, relevant responses to search questions, providing search users with ‘things’ rather than ‘strings’, and claimed that the site’s algorithms will work more like the human brain.
Available only to US-based users at present, the Knowledge Graph is seen as the future of search and will roll out in the UK and Europe in due course.
Mr Singh used the words ‘Taj Mahal’ to demonstrate how individual keywords could have different meanings to different search engine users.
"You might think of one of the world's most beautiful monuments, or a Grammy Award-winning musician, or possibly even a casino in Atlantic City, NJ. Or, depending on when you last ate, the nearest Indian restaurant," he said.
With the all new Knowledge Graph, Google has been programmed to organise search results, according to 3.5 billion different attributes, and group together results which share a single interpretation of the keywords or search terms requested.
Additionally, some searches including those concerning prominent people will pull up a summary box within which Google has compiled key information on that topic.
These efforts come hot on the heels of the work of Google rivals Bing, who also intend to provide a search experience which extends beyond a list of links. Microsoft Bing is currently undergoing a range of redesigns including last week’s introduction of the ‘snapshot’ feature.
Google, however, continues in its endeavours to create a search engine which responds more fully to search queries. Their intention is to work toward the ability to answer more complex queries such as "What are the 10 deepest lakes in Africa?"
In the meantime, search users will be invited to view information relevant to their interpretation of the search word in question and be provided with the maximum resource of information possible.
Andrew Redfern, Director of Hitsearch, said: "Google is aiming to optimise the way in which it presents the large volumes of data it has access to. This means going beyond a simple keyword search to incorporate images, shopping, news, maps and Google+ data.
"This information will transform listings and make them more relevant to each individual user. This is important, because the more relevant the returns to the user, the more accurately Google can sell advertisements."