Thursday, May 14, 2009

Full circle - The World needs more structure?


When at Verity, the claim was clear - 80% of the world's data is unstructured, so you need a way to search it - databases don't do the job! Get search software!

When at Y!, we launched a great new feature that allowed publishers to get more specific information into web search results - more power to publishers (who, hopefully, know more about their own content). The problem is - often, where there's a solution to a problem, the solution can create a new problem. Thus, search engines created SEO, leading to the proliferation of search spam!! Because of this, roll out of these publisher-centric features is sometimes tentative.

Google just rolled out Rich Snippets, which gives publishers more control over the metadata that's associated with their pages (adding structure to semi-structured information). With Custom Search, where the incentive to spam yourself and visitors to your own web site is lower (ha ha?), even more control...

Google's Searchology event also mentioned Google Squared, a new way to add tabular structure:
Unlike a normal search engine, Google Squared doesn't find webpages about your topic — instead, it automatically fetches and organizes facts from across the Internet.
More structure to unstructured data, more ways to slice and dice....

Full circle...or should I say square?
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