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Earlier internet search was keyword based but now it’s meaning-based: Amit Singhal

by Satrajit Sen

According to Amit Singhal, Google Fellow and the head of Google’s core search team, in the initial days of internet, search was primarily based on keywords typed in by consumers but now, search is totally based on what a consumer really wants to mean when he types in a particular search query.

by Satrajit Sen

According to Amit Singhal, Google Fellow and the head of Google’s core search team, in the initial days of internet, search was primarily based on keywords typed in by consumers but now, search is totally based on what a consumer really wants to mean when he types in a particular search query.

Giving examples, Amit Singhal said that when a consumer types in ‘change laptop brightness’, Google understands that the consumer wants to adjust the brightness of computer and shows corresponding results. Similarly, if somebody says ‘change to PDF’, Google shows results that means ‘convert to PDF’. Again when one says, ‘change dollars or change foreign currency’ Google automatically shows results corresponding to exchange of foreign currency.

“Sometimes people need an answer more than just a page and Google does that in the form of weather of a particular place, calculations, currencies etc,” Amit Singhal said while speaking at a press conference organised by Google India in New Delhi on August 10, 2010.

Amit Singhal further said, “It generally takes 15 to 30 days for a web page to come up in Google results but with the new real time results showing up on Google search, one can have access to new content. Trust, quality, language decency, author quality etc are kept in mind while showing real time results on Google-Twitter search.”

Commenting on Google Maps and directions, Amit Singhal said that Google has been focussing on adding landmarks to Google Maps as landmarks are more relevant than road name. Singhal also said that Delhi Metro has partnered with Google to show stops and stations on maps. “More local partners will help the product grow the user base in India,” according to Singhal.

On vernacular content search, Amit Singhal said that Google translation technology helps in converting English and other language content to Hindi. “Cross language search is a combination of search and translation technologies and Google is working extensively to make it huge product in India,” Singhal added.

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