Bing’s Voice Search On Xbox Now Searches The Web, Too

bing-logo-200 Microsoft is expanding Bing's capabilities in the living room with news today that Xbox users can search the web via their console. It's part of the "new entertainment experience" that Microsoft is pushing out this week via the Xbox. Bing Voice Search has been available on the Xbox since June 2011, but it could only search content available via the console itself -- games, movies, TV shows, music and so forth. But Microsoft has added Internet Explorer into the mix, and with that comes the ability to do Bing voice searches of web content, not just Xbox content. Here's how Bing explains it [...]

DuckDuckGo’s New Video Targets Google’s “Filter Bubble” Of Personalized Results

duckduckgo-logo DuckDuckGo's ongoing mission to challenge Google (and other search engines, but mainly Google) on privacy issues has taken another turn with the recent launch of a video that accuses Google of putting searchers in a "bubble" of personalized results. The video hits on a few of DuckDuckGo's consistent talking points in its ongoing battle to educate searchers on privacy issues and, more specifically, what it considers to be the benefits of using its own search engine instead of Google. Almost two years ago, DuckDuckGo launched, a website that details how Google tracks its users an [...]

DuckDuckGo Adds Zero-Click Info From Zanran

duckduckgo-zanran DuckDuckGo has added new "zero click" information from Zanran to its search results, giving users quicker access to some of the deeper web content that Zanran offers. You may remember Zanran from my profile last year, Zanran: New Search Engine That Unearths Data In Charts, Graphs & Tables -- it's essentially a search engine for data that often gets lost in PDFs, Excel documents and even images. The new integration into DuckDuckGo is about a week old, and can be seen on queries like [aircraft production brazil], [adult obesity prevalence in indiana] and [child poverty uk 2012]. [...]

An Illustrated Guide To E-Commerce Markup Using GoodRelations

In How Search & Social Engines Are Using Semantic Search, I started this series with an overview. This article will give you a walk through on generating local and organization markup for a store. We will look at an alternative vocabulary, namely GoodRelations, and take a deeper dive into the specifics of generating semantic markup for the e-commerce domain using GoodRelations. To clarify, GoodRelations is a vocabulary for e-commerce. Microdata and RDFa are syntaxes. for product is an alternate vocabulary for e-commerce. The diagram below from Linked Open Commerce gives an [...]

How Search & Social Engines Are Using Semantic Search

The term "Semantic Search" is certainly not new. However, it has taken on a new dimension and implications in both search and social engines today. In addition, it has had a strong impact on targeted semantic advertising. This special series of forthcoming articles on semantic search will take a look at the history behind the development of semantic technology and why it has now become so commercially viable and topical. It will also take a look at how the technology enables "answer engines," rather than simple search engines, to improve the user experience. For example, look at the dire [...]

Nuance’s Nina Is Siri For Enterprise Customer Service

Nuance Nina logo Although there were so-called "virtual assistants" before Siri, consumers had only limited experience with them and may not have even realized what they were dealing with at the time. United Airlines' "virtual agent" Alex is one such automated assistant, though it doesn't use speech and currently doesn't work on mobile devices. At least a dozen companies have created enterprise-focused assistants, based on "artificial intelligence," which today are mainly used for customer service online. However increasingly they extend into mobile and seek to offer Siri-like capabilities. Siri has become [...]

For Olympic Medal Count Info, Yahoo Gets Gold, Google Silver & Bing Bronze

olympic-search-featured Want to know the how various countries are doing in the London 2012 Olympics? For finding out using a major search engine, I give the gold to Yahoo, with Google narrowly missing to earn silver and Bing getting bronze mainly by virtue of being third in a three contestant race. Ready, Set, Search! Checking for results today on my phone, I was pretty impressed with Google's Knowledge Graph box that came up at the top of my results, showing the medals won by various countries. Kazakhstan was ranked seventh? Cool to discover! Plus, I was able to quickly learn this was for winning gold in road c [...]

Bing Integrates Qwiki Videos Into Search Results

qwiki-logo Bing's search results are getting a bit more interactive with the integration of machine-generated videos from Qwiki. The companies have just announced that some search results -- currently those where a Wikipedia page appears -- will offer searchers a chance to see and hear a Qwiki video about the search topic. The integration shows up as a single line below the main search result with a small "play" icon and a "Watch the Qwiki" call to action. Clicking that launches Qwiki's machine-generated video right in the search result. Various elements that appear in the video are clickabl [...]

Apple Siri To Add Sports, Restaurants, Reservations, Movies & App Search

siri Apple at their World Wide Developer Conference today announced iOS6 with some really nice features to Siri, their voice search engine. You can see a preview of some of these features at but here is a snapshot showing enhancements including: Sports Search Restaurants with Reservation Booking Movie Search & Ticketing Search For Apps On Device Support for iPad2 Maps by Apple (see Apple Gets Into Local Search With New Maps App) Language Support For 15 Countries and more... Siri uses apps already on iOS to provide answers such as Yahoo Weather, Maps, Yelp and o [...]

Bing Gets Its Own Knowledge Graph Via Britannica Partnership

bing-logo Bing's search results are getting a bit more informational thanks to a new partnership with Encyclopedia Britannica. They're calling it "Britannica Online Encyclopedia Answers," and it adds extra information about a search result right within the search results page. As the screenshots below show, it looks quite a bit like Google's recently-launched Knowledge Graph feature, but there are some differences that I'll mention below. I've used red arrows to highlight one of the main differences with how Google presents this data and Bing's version -- Bing links out to several third-party [...]

Google Says Knowledge Graph Has Led To More Searches

google-g-logo Searches are up in the two weeks since Google launched Knowledge Graph, its database of facts that adds context to a variety of search results. Although the company didn't share specific numbers, Google Fellow Amit Singhal told the Wall Street Journal that "people are interacting with it [the Knowledge Graph] more" and "doing more [search] queries." Those comments were made Friday, and Google spokesperson Jason Friedenfelds told the WSJ on Tuesday that internal stats show that users are still "doing more searches as a result" of Knowledge Graph. That makes perfect sense since the Knowled [...]

Google Launches Knowledge Graph To Provide Answers, Not Just Links

apple-books-education-featured Hinted at for months, Google formally launched its "Knowledge Graph" today. The new technology is being used to provide popular facts about people, places and things alongside Google's traditional results. It also allows Google to move toward a new way of searching not for pages that match query terms but for "entities" or concepts that the words describe. Knowledge Graph? "Graph" is a technical term used to describe how a set of objects are connected. Google has used a "link graph" to model how pages link to each other, in order to help determine which are popular and relevant for part [...]

Confirmed: Bing 411 Closing June 1st

Microsoft is closing down their toll-free voice search program named Bing 411. I have confirmed the Bing 411 service is closing by calling the service and hearing immediately the message: Bing 411: On June 1st, we are discontinuing the Bing 411 service. There were reports of this via LiveSide where they said they "received a tip" on this news. But this is indeed happening and Bing is closing down their 411 service. Google shut down their GOOG-411 service back in 2010. Bing kept theirs live hoping to fill that void, but clearly with the rise of smartphones and voice search embedde [...]

Google Testing “Sources” Area With Info About Movies, Books, People, Music & More

new girl Last November, Google tested a new "Sources" section in its search results, in the third column where ads normally appear. It seems the testing is underway again, showing extended information about actors, films, musicians, people and more. It also seems likely everyone may see this extended information soon, and that it's the "search refresh" the Wall Street Journal wrote about in March finally arriving. Experiment Confirmed I noticed these appearing yesterday in my own search results, and Google has confirmed that there's an experiment happening: We're always experimenting with ways to im [...]

Google Discussion Forum Snippets Now Showing “Top Answers”

Google has expanded the search descriptions to show the "top answer" and sometimes the "question" for discussion forum like search results. For example, a search for ["incoming search terms"] in Google returns results from Google Groups and StackOverflow and in those snippets, it shows the "top answer" listed in the forum. Here is a picture: Both these forums support the functionality of labeling an answer to the question as a "top answer." Google is clearly picking up on that, structuring the data as such and then displaying that directly in the search results. This is all likely [...]

WSJ Says Big Google Search Changes Coming? Reality Check Time!

reality-sign-featured The Wall Street Journal is out with a story saying that Google is about to make one of the biggest changes in its history of offering web search, providing more direct answers and gaining "semantic" smarts to understand more about what words mean. I'm scratching my head, since Google already does this. Methinks Google's PR has exploded in ways it didn't expect. Beyond Blue Links! From the story, we learn things such as: Over the next few months, Google's search engine will begin spitting out more than a list of blue Web links. It will also present more facts and direct answers to queries at [...]

Pew Report: 65% View Personalized Search As Bad; 73% See It As Privacy Invasion

personalized search Personalized search? Both Google and Bing will tell you that it provides better results. But two-thirds say they don't care. They view personalized search as a "bad thing," a new survey finds. Nearly three-quarters also view gathering data to personalize results to be a privacy invasion. The findings come out of a survey from the Pew Internet & American Life Project. Around 2,000 adults in the US were questioned between January 20 and February 19 of this year as part of a wide-ranging poll about search engine use, though fewer may have answered particular questions. Personalized Sea [...]

Wolfram|Alpha Goes Pro With Powerful Data Analysis & Presentation Tools

WolframAlphaProFeatures1.jpg Wolfram|Alpha (W|A) is launching a new fee-based service named Wolfram|Alpha Pro. In today's highly competitive environment, you may wonder why W|A would ask people to pay for what many think should be free. Read on: you may decide to willingly open your wallet when you see what's available. Since Wolfram|Alpha launched in 2009, I’ve often wondered if the company would allow users to use their extremely powerful computing infrastructure to analyze their own data along with data sets available on the open web. Well, they have and that's what Wolfram|Alpha Pro is all about. As I wrote a [...]

Yelping In The Beemer: Review Site Inks Deal With BMW

Yelp is now established and mainstream enough to be included in BMW's Online/in-car content. Yelp reviews and related content will shortly be available to BMW owners "who subscribe to the optional BMW Assist Convenience Plan and have a navigation-equipped vehicle capable of receiving the BMW Online service." This means select BMW vehicles (see below for list) and is available in the US only for now. However Yelp's international coverage makes it probable that the partnership will roll out more broadly if it proves successful in the US. Yelp offered some screens of the BMW in-car search o [...]

Siri, Are You Taking Over Mobile Search?

iphone-siri-featured The new iPhone 4s comes with a feature that is bound to impact how search marketers try to reach iPhone users. Siri, the voice recognition app that comes standard with the new iPhone, can be used to control text messaging and reminders inside the device. But it can also be used as a search tool, to call up specific information from the outside world. With the mobile search space already in flux, Siri adds a game-changing angle, particularly for marketers that want to reach the lucrative (presumably affluent) iPhone audience. Here are some factors for businesses to consider as Siri gro [...]

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