Posted October 22, 2009 7:23 am by with 4 comments

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google-logoSearch is changing very rapidly these days and it looks like we are going to need to buckle up to keep up with the changes and, even more likely, the rumored changes. Until I can use something myself (which means the rest of you can as well) then it is all rumor. Experimentation is the order of the day in search and especially as it relates to social search and the holy grail of real time search.

Since bing and Google have both announced their deals with Twitter regarding using Twitter’s vaunted stream to allow the world to update us with whatever the world deems important (note: while that sounds valuable on the surface I think that getting through the spam and other crap is going to be a pretty big deal for the end user to stomach but that’s for another day I suppose) the talk is all about how we can harness this new age of on-demand information.

Google’s Marissa Mayer informally rolled out a Google Labs experiment which was introduced yesterday and reported by TechCrunch

At the Web 2.0 Summit today in San Francisco, Google’s Marissa Mayer unexpectedly came on stage to unveil a new product. She first announced that Google has also reached a deal with Twitter, which she wrote a blog post about earlier in the day, following the announcement that Bing and Twitter had done the same thing.

But Mayer had more to share. There’s a new Google product called “Social Search” that is launching soon in Google Labs. This is a new feature that allows you to see results for queries from people in your social network. This works by using your Google Profile. If you fill it out with the other social networks you’re a member of, such as FriendFeed, Google will scan who you are connected to and give your results from those people.

Nifty, I suppose. First, let’s define the people that are in many of these networks of ours. How many of them do we really know and also how many are reliable sources of any data to begin with. Not that this idea isn’t interesting it just seems that as we put more and more power into the hands of people with no experience there will be a degree of “train wreckiness” in the results. Also, as some people start to feel some power around being a source I suspect the limits of what is newsworthy will be stretched paper-thin pretty quickly.

So enough of the negativity, right? This Google Labs thing could be interesting. It will work with your Google profile and be opt-in for now according to Mayer (which implies later on it won’t be? When it’s not, it will likely end up like the personalized search history that not many are aware of which means more data for Google. Yay.).

So this should take place in the next few weeks and we’ll keep our eyes peeled for any updates. When it does happen are you interested?

  • Could be useful.. There are some other services that attempt to do the same type of “social web” for an individual, so we’ll see how Google pulls it together. I have not yet seen one labs feature that was a complete failure, so let’s hope this is not their first.
    .-= Aaron´s last blog ..Bing announces search for Twitter feeds =-.

  • Here is the problem, all of the spam. As I indicated yesterday I think, when I searched for info on a product review in both Google and Twitter all I got was people hawking the product looking for an affiliate sale. I couldn’t find a real unbiased review.

    I think it will be the same for other searches. And if a site can get better rankings, by spamming Twitter, Facebook, etc. shame on the SEs.

    I have a good number of “friends” on facebook. 100% of them are people I know in some way or another. But most of what is shared is what they are up to or recent pictures. They aren’t posting product reviews whether it is their latest TV purchase or the newest MMO product launch.

    At least for now, the Social stuff is being kept separate. When it isn’t, it will probably be the best opportunity for a new SE to come in to play. One that gives good, uncluttered results.

    cd :O)
    .-= ChrisCD´s last blog ..Best IRA Certificate of Deposit Rates – October 2009 =-.

  • Tim

    Hi Frank,
    Couldn.t agree more on the spam issue. It gets harder every day to get straight to the info you require and this latest development will only serve to put more useless clutter in a system that seems destined to implode under the weight of boring chit chat of insecure individuals who feel compelled to share every mundane, insignificant, irrelevant detail of their pathetic existence with their long suffering friends and any other poor individuals who happen to trip over their profiles while trying to navigate a hazardous course through the cyber world.

  • I agree with the spam issue. There are few businesses that have utilized SEO to its full potential in order to truly stand out from spam. This makes it difficult to find answers relevant to the search. The social search needs to be separated from other informational searching. This could otherwise be disastrous and make many users unhappy.