After introducing various social features into its search engine over the years, ramping up launches since the release of its new social network Google+, Google has today announced it will begin introducing three new features to help connect users to their social networking profiles.
Detailing its plans in a post on its official blog, Google says that its new features include “Personal Results”, enabling users to find information specifically related to them, “Profiles in Search”, which enables users to find Google+ profiles with search queries and “People and Pages”, a new feature that helps users find Google+ pages and profiles related to specific topics, areas or brands.
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With Personal Results, Google wants help users to search within their friend networks alongside traditional search, allowing them to find and view relevant Google+ posts that are related to trips away, events or major news stories that have brought people together.
Google says that “links shared by your friends, such as activities, restaurants and other things they enjoyed on their trip” will all be included. The search giant has also made sure to embed relevant photos within a users personal search results page, collecting a user’s own private photos on Google+ and Picasa, matching queries to captions, comments and album titles.
Profiles in Search
With Google’s new features, users will now be able to start typing a friend’s name and the form will auto-populate the field. This will then bring up the profile, delivering information delivered on their Google+ account and web results that are connected to them.
If you’ve used Facebook, you will know how this feature works. Type the first couple of letters of someone you follow on Google+ and it will autocomplete the query for you, right from your normal Google search.
If you are searching for someone who you aren’t friends with, Google also allows you to add them to your Circles with the click of a button.
People and Pages
With the new People and Pages feature, Google will now match queries related to a specific topic or area of interest to posts on Google+, allowing users to tune into relevant conversations on its social network.
Google has made sure to display power users that discuss topics on the right-hand side of the results page, giving users the option to connect with them and engage in conversations around topics that they share a common interest in.
How It Affects You
With so much information now available at Google users’ fingertips, the search giant has to ensure that personal data is not displayed in other users’ search results. To do so, Google says it has employed SSL encryption on Google+, incorporating it into its results pages.
Google has also made sure to label results as Public, Limited or Only you, alerting users as to the nature of their search results. To make sure that users who do not want to view personal content within their results, the company has also delivered a toggle that allows users to switch modes and conduct searches free from friend suggestions and additional Google+ content.
While there may be 7 billion people and 197 million square miles on Earth, a septillion stars and a trillion webpages, we spend our short, precious lives living in a particular town, with particular friends and family, orbiting a single star and relying on a tiny slice of the world’s information.
Our dream is to have technology enable everyone to experience the richness of all their information and people around them. We named our company after the mathematical number googol as an aspiration toward indexing the countless answers on webpages, but that’s only part of the picture. The other part is people, and that’s what Search plus Your World is all about.