Google updates search engine with new options

By Iain Thomson on May 13, 2009 3:55 PM
Filed under Software

Aiming to stay ahead of competition, new and old.

Google has been showing off new search technology that it hopes will keep it ahead of the competition.

At a special Searchology event Google showed off new search methods aimed at understanding the reasoning behind search queries rather than just producing raw data for the user to sift through.

An experimental feature called Google Squared displays search information in a spreadsheet. For example, a search on 'small dogs' shows pictures of different breeds alongside additional information on size, weight, life expectancy and breeder details.

“Unlike a normal search engine, Google Squared doesn't find web pages about your topic — instead, it automatically fetches and organizes facts from across the Internet. We'll be opening it up to users later this month on Google Labs,” said the company.

“These features really explore search from a broad and entirely new perspective. Because we realize that when you can't quickly find just the exact information or content you need or want, it's our problem, not yours. And it's a problem with plenty of room left for innovation.”

Another new tool, Search Options, allows users to “slice and dice” their results to fit different search profiles, such as forums or the most recent results. Search Options will go live within a week.

The company also unveiled a new application for the Android phone operating system called Sky Map. This allows users to hold their phone up to the night sky and get an annotated image with the constellations marked.

The announcements are a sign of increasing competition in the search engine market. New contender is gaining attention for its new search techniques and Microsoft is planning a major revamp of its search services this summer.

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