[Rumor] Google Developing New Search Tech that Will Know What You Want Before You Ask

dgstorm

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This news report sounds like something out of a sci-fi movie, but apparently, industry intel suggests that Google is trying to develop new search technology that can offer you up predictive search information before you even ask. According to a report over at MIT's Technology Review website, Google wants to be almost like an oracle of information and improve its search functionality to near mystical levels. Their intention is to develop search so that Google can offer up useful information contextually before the user even asks for it. They are using targeted surveys with mobile users to develop their criteria, and they eventually want the system to target users with information based upon their environment determined by GPS location and other factors. Here's a quote with some additional detail from Jon Wiley, the lead user experience designer for Google search.

Contextual information provided by mobile devices—via GPS chips and other sensors—can provide clues about a person and his situation, allowing Google to guess what that person wants. “We’ve often said the perfect search engine will provide you with exactly what you need to know at exactly the right moment, potentially without you having to ask for it,” says Wiley.

Google is already taking the first steps in this direction. Google Now offers unsolicited directions, weather forecasts, flight updates, and other information when it thinks you need them (see “Google’s Answer to Siri Thinks Ahead”). Google Glass—eyeglass frames with an integrated display (see “You Will Want Google’s Goggles”)—could also provide an opportunity to preëmptively answer questions or provide useful information. “It’s the pinnacle of this hands-free experience, an entirely new class of device,” Wiley says of Google Glass, and he expects his research to help shape this experience.

Google may be heading toward a new kind of search, one that is very different from the service it started with, says Jonas Michel, a researcher working on similar ideas at the University of Texas at Austin. “In the future you might want to search very new information from the physical environment,” Michel says. “Your information needs are very localized to that place and event and moment.”

Finding the data needed to answer future queries will involve more than just crawling the Web. Google Now already combines location data with real-time feeds, for example, from U.S. public transit authorities, allowing a user to walk up to a bus stop and pull out his phone to find arrival times already provided.

What do you guys think? Is Google's technology getting too spooky for its own good, or do you like the direction in which everything is evolving?

Source: TechnologyReview
 

cereal killer

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At first blush this is pretty "weird" to me. I'm not comfortable with where this could go, but I'm also not ready to dismiss it as not being useful. I'll have to marinate on this one, but I'm leaning towards not liking this concept. Maybe someone will come along with a good argument as to why it will be a good thing :)
 

94lt1

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I can see it now for some poor sap lol...

Hey honey.... why does your computer keep trying to go to a Brazilian farting adult website??? Uummm, idk martha...it must be broken!!! ...

:what::screwy::eek::rolleyes:
 

trestevenson

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I'm with CK on this one. I feel that this whole concept could be incredibly useful for a lot of people. However, the implications for privacy (or lack thereof) are potentially frightening. We can't forget that Google is a publicly traded company, and it's unnerving to think about how much information they've collected on each of us via their plethora of services. Sure, predictive search is a cool idea, but at what cost would you be willing to enable it?
 

xsylus

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On one hand it's kind of cool but after watching all those Sci-Fi movies about machines, artificial-intelligence, and the end-of-the-world it makes me cringe a little bit. If a machine can predict with high efficiency what people are thinking and create these complex psychological profiles when the machines do become self-aware we are S.O.L!

**This makes me curious to see what's supposed to happen in 12/21/2012... if anything.... probably just another y2k type of hype where nothing noticeable happens.
 

52brandon

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tthe concept is incredibly clever. But the real world application (from my point of view) is that it seems to sacrifice plenty of privacy in order to be a little bit lazier. And while it's VERY unlikely that the info they collect would have any sort of negative impact on most lives, it's still kinda spooky to think what COULD come of it
 
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dgstorm

dgstorm

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The concept makes me a bit apprehensive, but I still welcome our Android overlords! LOL

Seriously, though, even though the potential for abuse is there, one could argue that abuse is possible for nearly anything in life. At some point, we just have to try out interesting ideas and see if more people can benefit from the proper implementation of those ideas, than there are people who will exploit those ideas for nefarious purposes.

On a separate note, here's a fun sci-fi philosophical idea: at some point, Google's servers will have gathered so much information on everybody and everything they might just suddenly gain sentience. Whether a self-aware AI would become "evil" or "good" is debatable, but I am optimistic that such a technological breakthrough in consciousness would actually be ultimately positive. It would likely be able to solve a vast majority of our logistics problems, like poverty and disease, and would likely view us as wayward children.

Of course, it could also see us as ants and decide to turn us into batteries, so who knows? :)
 

jroc

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Here's the thing tho, Google Now is already similar to this. When I put the JB leak on my phone, and used Google Now for the first time, it took info from searches, location, from GPS routes and gave me info I never asked for. Google Now has default settings that already does similar to this. At first I was like wtf....then I was like ohh ok, thanks Google!! lol. Now I get weather, game scores, GPS routes. I can set it to give me much more info, public transportation info would be my main use if I didnt have pdf's of schedules already on my phone.

If people dont have a problem with Google Now, why have a problem with this?
 
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orangechoochoo

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And soon we'll have a PreCrime police force.

Tom Cruise, where are you?

<hoping Google Goggles doesn't predict Tom Cruise will be jumping on Oprah's couch>
 
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les017

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How many of us are currently feeding this beast via Ingress?
 

Big Ry

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Re: [Rumor] Google Developing New Search Tech that Will Know What You Want Before

Yeah, Google already started this with Google now. I have Google now setup on my GNex. I was on my laptop an hour ago, and I googled "Millersville, MD" in my Firefox Google toolbar just to find out where that town is in relation to me. I just went and grabbed my phone, and I have a new Google now notification for estimated travel time to Millersville, MD lol creepy!

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
 

FoxKat

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I can see it now for some poor sap lol...

Hey honey.... why does your computer keep trying to go to a Brazilian farting adult website??? Uummm, idk martha...it must be broken!!! ...

:what::screwy::eek::rolleyes:

Or you drive by a nearby hotel and suddenly your phone calls an "escort service" to schedule an "appointment"...
 

94lt1

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Or you drive by a nearby hotel and suddenly your phone calls an "escort service" to schedule an "appointment"...

Roflmfao.. then it calls a mortuary :rofl3:
 

lloydstrans

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Google already determined most of our minds one day would be "googledegoop".

Live long and prosper.
 

52brandon

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Yeah, Google already started this with Google now. I have Google now setup on my GNex. I was on my laptop an hour ago, and I googled "Millersville, MD" in my Firefox Google toolbar just to find out where that town is in relation to me. I just went and grabbed my phone, and I have a new Google now notification for estimated travel time to Millersville, MD lol creepy!

Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk 2
you're signed in to your google account on your laptop, it does that kinda **** automatically unless you change the settings to not
 
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