San Francisco -- Relentlessly striving to disseminate everything it discovers afresh, global search engine titan Google on Wednesday revealed several changes it has taken to “make search even more intelligent,” including pushing out some significant updates to the Knowledge Graph platform this week to all English-speaking users around the globe.
Knowledge Graph, which first introduced in May, is almost identical to Bing's panel that appears to the right of search results showing facts related to a user's search query. Starting today, Knowledge Graph feature will be expanded to users across the world, as long as they are searching in English, Google announced today. Previously, it was only available in the United States.
With the global expansion, Google hopes to present users' relevant information based on their location. A search for the term “chiefs,” for example, would yield information about the football team the Kansas City Chiefs in the U.S., for instance. Amit Singhal, senior vice president of Google Search, cited a few examples in a blog post.
If you are searching from Australia for [chiefs], you will get the rugby team—its players, results and history.
“We will also use this intelligence to help you find the right result more quickly when your search may have different meanings,” says Singhal in a blog post. “For instance, if you search for [rio], you might be interested in the Brazilian city, the recent animated movie or the casino in Vegas. Thanks to the Knowledge Graph, we can now give you these different suggestions of real-world entities in the search box as you type.”
Perhaps this will cut down on the controversial search suggestions that always seem to find their way into the news (and court). Furthermore, Knowledge Graph results are going to be localized for different regions. This would be relevant and speed up the search process when looking for information about commonly named towns and sports teams.
Another significant update is that Knowledge Graph results will be sneaked in to the auto-complete library of search terms for the search box, improving Google's search functionality overall.
In addition, Google will now incorporate a new interactive carousel showing relevant lists and collections for certain queries (see image below). Searching for “museums in NYC,” for instance, will offer up a browsable list at the top of the search results page showing the museums in New York. This feature is especially helpful because users are not always searching for a single topic, and might be looking for a list or collection of things, Google said.
Knowledge Graph results will appear scrollable at the top of your search. (Credit: Google)
“So far we can produce hundreds of thousands of lists involving millions of items, and we will keep growing to match your curiosity,” Singhal, wrote in a blog post Wednesday.
“Finally, the best response to your question is not always a single entity, but a list or group of connected things,” noted Singhal. Hence, “It is quite a demanding process to pull these lists automatically from the web. But we are now beginning to do just that. So when you search for [california lighthouses], [hurricanes in 2008] or [famous female astronomers], we will show you a list of these things across the top of the page. And by combining our Knowledge Graph with the collective wisdom of the web, we can even provide more subjective lists like [best action movies of the 2000s] or [things to do in paris]. If you click on an item, you can then explore the result more deeply on the web.”
Eventually, Google is really throwing the classic simple, uncluttered design out the window these days. For a closer look at the technology under the hood of Knowledge Graph, check out the promo video below: