I had a conversation the other day with one of my former colleagues, and I asked him his opinion about whether approximate matching and semantic techniques would be integrated into search engines. His response surprised me: he told me that he had read that over 90% of google searches involve a single word, and that in the absence of information, the engine didn't have that much to work with. Therefore, was it really worth it to add this increased functionality if, for the most part, it would add computation time but only benefit a small number of searchers?
That, of course, shocked me, but maybe it shouldn't have. I thought I was pretty good at googling, mostly because I was able to get pretty good results as a by-product of the feedback I get from each search. For example, you start with a phrase in quotes, and that may be sufficient. If not, you can scan the short results coming back to seek out better phrases to include (or exclude) from the search. Others are much more comprehensive in their searching, using qualifiers and key tokens to enhance their search (e.g., Johnny Long, who will be a keynote speaker at the upcoming Data Governance conference in San Francisco, at which I will also be speaking, by the way).
But perhaps the general computer user is not so sophisticated, and may need some suggestions. Anyone want to contribute their favorite search strategies?
Posted May 25, 2007 6:33 AM
Permalink | No Comments |