Google's Growing Database of the World's Information, and You


Tom Simonite of the MIT Technology Review recently wrote, "For all its success, Google’s famous Page Rank algorithm has never understood a word of the billions of Web pages it has directed people to over the years. That’s why in 2010 Google acquired Metaweb, a company building a database intended to give computers the ability to understand the world. Two years later the company’s technology resurfaced as the Knowledge Graph. John Giannandrea, vice president of engineering at Google and a Metaweb cofounder, says that will lead to Google’s future products being able to truly understand the people who use them and the things they care about. He told MIT Technology Review’s Tom Simonite how a data store designed to link together all the knowledge on Earth might do that."


Giannandrea told Simonite, "Inside Google the Knowledge Graph is a piece of infrastructure and it’s getting larger and broader and deeper all the time. It’s a cross-company effort. Almost all the structured data from all of our products like Maps and Finance and Movies and Music are all in the Knowledge Graph, so we can reasonably say that everything we know about is in this canonical form. It lets our product people in all parts of the company be more ambitious. As a general theme we’re trying to move beyond just searching to actually knowing about things. We think this is essential because we want to understand what you’re trying to do and give you some help. Google Now is an example of a product that is trying to figure out the state that you’re in and make a suggestion to you."


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Image: Courtesy Google