Google Knowledge graph search

Google Knowledge graph search

Launched back in May 2012, the Knowledge Graph is a basis used by Google to enhance their search engine result listings. It collects data from a wide variety of sources and compiles it into a coherent and structural form to be presented on the search result’s page. The Knowledge Graph appears beside the usual search engine results of Google and tries to resolve the queries of users on the go i.e. without having to go to other websites from the results given.

Most of you must be well acquainted with answer engines like Yahoo Answers and Ask Jeeves etc. Knowledge Graph tends to perform the same job just that it doesn’t ask you to go to a website for it. The basic source of information used in this includes mega databases like Wikipedia, other Wikis and Encyclopedias and so on. To make it easy for a layman to understand, when you search for a topic like, say, “Capital of Pakistan” the resultant page on Google would give you obvious websites like Wikipedia, map websites, websites from the Pakistani government and so on; but what when you look at the top right or top left side of your results list, you will see the answer to your query i.e. “Islamabad” written in big bold letters, on the right you will see a Google Maps rendition of the map of Islamabad the capital of Pakistan and below it you will see Wikipedia-like information; for example description, area and population. This, my friends is the Knowledge Graph. Most of you must have noticed how this started to appear only last year – of course that is actually when the service was launched.

Looking at it from where it all started, the Knowledge Graph is actually much larger than it is credited for. This is actually the start of an evolutionary process in the internet world and specifically in the vast and never ending world of internet knowledge bases. Imagine what this little tool could do to all the millions of websites that feed on people who are looking for answers to their queries. If Google manages to turn this into a more detailed, complex and fully satisfying alternative to the major websites that are basically doing the same, this could actually mean the end of them.

Knowledge Graph is not just a links source. The word Graph actually represents how things are connected with each other and so just as Google’s intent states, it tries to connect and create relationships between people, places, things and facts. For instance, searching Capital of Pakistan (a place) would also provided you links to areas of interest around Islamabad, or the colleges and universities situated in Islamabad. If you had clicked on one of those universities it would have taken you to another Knowledge Graph result and the process would go on linking things and places and people together in a way that they actually are linked in real life.

Only recently, the Knowledge Graph was updated to include a couple of new cheesy features like comparisons and filters. Comparisons, as the name suggests, makes you compare two separate things visually and factually. For example, if you write Mike Tyson vs. Muhammad Ali the result will show you images of both, their status, age etc. Filters will now let you select a category of results to be shown in the image carousel that is shown above the usual results.

Considering how they are progressing with the tool, I am expecting it to be something major in the very near future – what can I say I am a big fan of Google. Oh well, who isn’t.