Facebook is all set to introduce a new feature and completely change the way we search for people and stuff on it. It is the Facebook’s new “Graph Search”. Since Facebook is huge and there are more than a billion people and more than 240 billion photos on it, so “Graph Search” will allow users to find people with similar interests like music, places, food, sports e.t.c. According to Facebook “The first version of Graph Search focuses on four main areas — people, photos, places, and interests.” Let’s see how to search for something on it and how to get your beta version.
How to use Facebook’s Graph Search?
This Graph Search seems like (not exactly same) a text version of Apple’s Siri. You can search for people, photos, places, interests and make new connections. Once you start typing it automatically suggests relevant content in a drop down list. You can filter your results using tools on the right sidebar of search results page. Check out some example of searches below:
People who like tennis and live nearby.
Photos before 1990.
Photos of my friends in New York.
Sushi restaurants in Palo Alto my friends have liked.
Tourist attractions in Italy visited by my friends.
How Graph Search works?
Graph Search looks for search results based on your friend’s posts shared with you or post from other people on Facebook who shared it publicly with everyone. That means search results will be different for different users. Facebook made it very clear that no private posts will be shown in the search results.
Also there will be no change in your current privacy settings. If you don’t want to share your posts like location, tags or posts you can change it on your Activity Log.
When you can start using it?
Currently beta version of “Graph Search” is out but it is available to a small number of people who are using Facebook in English (US). If you wish to use the beta version you can join the waiting list. Open this page and click “Join Waiting List” at the bottom of page.
Google auto-complete suggestions for search are probably based on what people search for most. But what people search for most changes according to geographic locations. There is also the average age of the internet user which keeps changing from country to country.
For example most people in the US, who use the internet or Google to search for stuff online are probably older than say Indians, where a lot of users are very young and in college.
We decided to check out how auto-suggestions change from US and India for the same query on Google.
The first image is from Google.com (US) and the next one is from Google.co.in (India).
The difference is a lot between the two countries. Google auto-complete suggestions do give interesting results. If you liked this post, you might enjoy these two posts which are based on similar ideas of auto-suggestions.
One of the best innovations from Bing was to have an image as background on its homepage for search. Bing now has gone a bit further and introduced a video that plays in the background of the search homepage.
Users from the United States will be able to see this video background for Bing.com. If you are from outside the US, one can change the location to United States and access this video background layout.
It is quite seamless and looks like a nice attractive layout for search compared to the sparse and simple Google homepage.
Is it just a publicity stunt?
Honestly, I do not use Bing except when it catches some sort of publicity with a new feature. This means Bing is not getting users because of better results or better user interface but mainly for something new on its layout.
Google might be sparse in its design with the occasional doodle which is entertaining but it does do something that Bing does not, which is get people using it as a default search engine.
The idea of a search engine is to send people outwards to relevant links and not having them staring at nice background images or videos. This is something Bing should try to go for, rather than get a few more people visiting it once to check a very cool yet quite useless feature.
What are your views? Which search engine do you use? Do drop in your comments.
Google has practically replaced the word “search”. Forget the internet, think of an abnormal day where you aren’t involved with the computer at all, you wake up – look for your glasses – slippers – clothes – keys – a way through the traffic – parking – the search never ends. If there is one entity that can define and then redefine this word, it has to be Google.
Google Instant Preview takes it to a new level. You are probably aware of the recent breakthrough with Google Instant which throws up search results as you type the search query. With Instant Preview, the user can preview the website of each search result before choosing to visit the page.
Google created a real buzz when it rolled out Google Instant. This led to SEO experts wondering how it will affect the SEO business along with some wondering if search patterns will change with new Google Instant.
After that was done, a student by the name Feross Aboukhadijeh from Standford, CA took a bet with his friend and decided to create an Instant search engine for YouTube videos in less than an hour! He lost the bet as it took him 3 hours but we do have a nifty search tool for YouTube.
Facebook’s search results have been changed a bit for better relevance. Facebook has released a new feature in which if I want to search about an article I get the results based on the likes and dislikes of my friends. That is the results will affect on how many friends like or share that news.
In a way it is interesting that my search results will include my friend’s likes. Facebook said that the content displayed will be only that is shared by your friends. This is a result of newly added patent which is based on the amount of clicks any user does. Previously this was not available by Facebook’s Open Graph Search. Now Facebook is using its social graph for its relevance.
Suppose I choose a topic as ‘Facebook Patent’ as my new search. The result that I see is based on how many friends have liked or shared that particular news. In the above picture you can see that the first result is shared by 141 people and the other is liked by 3 people.
So what even if you are a Facebook fan like me,will our friend’s likes and dislikes make us decide what is relevant and what is not??? Do share your thoughts and experience on this through your comments.
Have you ever noticed how the English word ‘Search‘ immediately sends an image of ‘Google‘ in your mind? With its great search results and interesting search algorithms we people enjoy having an on line dictionary or encyclopedia that is free. Well the thing is now Facebook is being awarded a social search patent that was used by Google earlier.
This is based on the amount of clicks number of users do. That is, the search results pages are ranked according to the number of clicks by its users. This patent’s application was filed six years ago by Facebook people. I do not know whether it was using this thing or not earlier also. Is it so that the users should like or see only those things that are viewed by their friends or friends of friends? Suppose his/her interests do not match in some way but he is bound to see the links what his/her friends in the network like.
What do you think of such a patent? Do you think we will see any important changes to Facebook search or any other thing related to it?
Yesterday I covered real-time results with Google search. The results shown with real-time are continuous as they are published on the internet. I feel this is great and I can even create Google alerts directly from the search page.
The only issue was if I was searching for a real-time results about a certain event most results would be picked up from Twitter. I did not like that and wished I could exclude Twitter for real-time search results.
How it works!
It is quite simple. Just type in your search query and search for it. I searched for “Cricket” and got many results. Most of these results were from Twitter.
To exclude search results showing links from Twitter I just had to enter “Cricket -site:twitter.com“
Immediately the real-time results being shown had tweets omitted as search results.:-)
This trick works even with normal Google search results. This is a great way to search for something and exclude results from popular social networking websites.
This tip can also work with Twitter search. For example search for “#India -username” (do not use @username and use only username) and you can get all tweets with India tag but a particular username’s tweets are omitted. Helps to omit spam.
Do try out these tips and if you know a few more do share them through your comments.
Google has recently made a few noises about real-time results. This is probably because Twitter is fast becoming the most dominant search engine for internet users, when it comes to real-time results.
So now we have Google Real Time results which shows webs results as they happen.
How to use Google realtime?
Just head over to http://google.com/realtime. This will take you to the real-time search landing page like seen in the image above.
Type in the query and you will get live results which are streaming. Unfortunately most results are from Twitter. This is ironic as Google realtime is actually trying to counter the rise of Twitter, which is the rising as a search tool for real-time results.
Another way you can reach these realtime search results are by clicking on the left hand tab named Updates. (see image below
Google realtime results looks like a cool service but it is showing a lot of results from Twitter. I might just use Twitter search instead.