Google's CEO Talks of Augmented Humanity Through Intelligent Search

By Susan J. Campbell September 07, 2010

Is it a case of information overload or intelligent search? This is one question you may want to ask as you evaluate new technologies emerging from Google

PC Mag reported on recent announcements made by Google Chief Eric Schmidt. As Schmidt noted, search engines are designed to find the information you want right now; the next logical step is to do that automatically. He even suggests that doing the search before you think to conduct the search is the desired goal.


I can see the benefit in this capability, but I’m not sure I want my mobile device providing me with information at a constant level. This constant stream is what Schmidt is referring to as he describes the next stage of search.Schmidt served as the closing keynote at the IFA conference in Berlin. 

During his speech he noted that one in three queries from mobile phones is now related to things or places in the user’s immediate vicinity. As a result, Google is now working on getting its search results closer to what the user actually means and not just what they type.

“When someone asks 'what's the weather like' – what you're really asking is 'should I wear a raincoat' or 'should I water the plants?'” Schmidt said. "We think we can get closer" to the information for which a user is really searching.

Referred to as “augmented humanity”, this type of search is what Schmidt hopes will lead to a time when computers will actually do the work for us or make it more possible for us to do the things we really want to do.

Ultimately search is a personal activity, so ultimately ... search is not just the Web, but literally all your information," Schmidt said. He did stress that privacy will be included in that equation. Given the problems related to privacy Google has had as of late, they may need to focus a little more resources in that area. He went on to say that with the technology Google has in the works, users will never forget anything, will never be lost and will never be lonely or bored. 

In all fairness, however, this technology will not improve my memory – it just may provide a place to store things I want easy access to in the future. As for being lost or bored – sometimes that can be fun and I’m not totally convinced I want to fill every waking moment.

That said, I think we all would embrace more intelligent search and automatic information. And, for those days where it really doesn’t need to occupy my time, I still have a power-off button.


Susan J. Campbell is a contributing editor for TechZone360 and has also written for eastbiz.com. To read more of Susan’s articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Erin Harrison

TechZone360 Contributing Editor

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