Brighton SEO 2012: Serendipitous Web Search on Mobile
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Brighton SEO 2012: Serendipitous Web Search on Mobile

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Google key exec spokespeople Marissa Mayer and Eric Schmidt have spoken frequently in the past couple of years about ambitions for a Serendipity engine. This presentation looks at required data points ...

Google key exec spokespeople Marissa Mayer and Eric Schmidt have spoken frequently in the past couple of years about ambitions for a Serendipity engine. This presentation looks at required data points for such predictive modelling and how we are almost there...

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  • Intro
  • When it comes to mobile search, one product development which Google frequently speak about is “serendipity”.Serendipitous search is under Marissa Mayers remit, and has been referenced often since her move to VP Geo/Local. Before looking at these references it’s interesting to remind ourselves that Mayers’ background is AI – that being her major at Stanford.
  • Of course, it’s not possible to “predict” the future, though occasionally we can combine information freely shared; with known developments in existing product, combined with general evolutions in tech.
  • As far back as 2009 Mayer and Schmidt were speaking about development plans for “serendipity”. A mobile “opt-in” service. Explain how the product has been described thus far e.g. an “opt-in” service on mobile that combines location, preference etc to push search results to users. But what data points would be needed for such a product to work?
  • History of all searches is of course collected and can be viewed as a log by all logged in users as a default. Though you can remove your web history “as outlined in the Google Privacy Policy, Google maintains a separate logs system for auditing purposes and to help us improve the quality of our services for users.”
  • Proclivity is inclination, likelihood – defined as a tendency to choose or do something regularly. It’s therefore behavioural, related to preferences that might be shaped by past experience, cultural-social influences.
  • Caffeine infrastructure upgrade – extremely significant from machine learning perspective. Google instant is most significant thing I can see outwardly resulting from this. The Feedback-on-the-fly facilitated by instant allows for far more sophisticated proclivity modelling.
  • As mentioned our proclivities are shaped by socio-cultural influences, therefore more informed behavioural modelling requires social data – there is a need for both connectivity and community data
  • Quite a bold statement and one that Schmidt possibly regrets, though perfectly true at the time, because of course connectivity data is already available to Google thanks to the social graph
  • Our identities and connections are already well known to Google. Social circle results already favour documents shared by those in our “circle” – why wouldn’t a broader algorithm use this data?
  • Xfn rel attributes and othermicroformats offer exceptional interpersonal detail and entity detail e.g. hCard, hReview “describe” properties.
  • And of course – products like latitude already allow us to make our location known and trackable and track that of our friends...
  • Already described as an opt-in service, certainly our permission would be required, plus consideration to privacy – which oh, of course, had a significant change across the whole of Google properties quite recently.
  • I can not predict exactly what Schmidt means by this – though we might interpret this as the goal of providing machine-discovered layers of data to augment our physical behaviour. It was at this event that Schmidt (talking about the serendipity engine) singled out personal context – with permission.
  • I’m away from home – on business. Google know this because I use latitude. I love coffee. Google know this because I search for coffee shops often when I’m mobile. Wouldn’t it be logical to imagine a serendipitous search prompt to find a coffee shop when I’m out at 8.00 am in a strange place? Using augmented reality, search products like Layar, already present results to me in this way. Why not Google?
  • What about if my latitude friends are nearby? Or if fellow serendipity users are opted into “discovery” services?
  • As Kincaid notes’ the UI is yet to be determined, but Mayer is confident we will be seeing this product soon. Serendipity could conceivably be with us by the end of this year.
  • My one star take-away for mobile SEO. Get your house in order, adopt schema; then it’s all about LoSo strategy.

Brighton SEO 2012: Serendipitous Web Search on Mobile Brighton SEO 2012: Serendipitous Web Search on Mobile Presentation Transcript

  • Mobile Serendipity: How GooglePlans to Send Search Results to You,Before Youve Even Thought to Look Nichola Stott – theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • Serendipitous Search theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • “The ultimate prize for Mayer isintuitive search. She wants Google tobe capable of presenting informationto users before they even know what theyre looking for.” Telegraph Interview Marissa Mayer – December 2009 theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • History
  • Proclivity theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • Community
  • “Our social strategy does not require the acquisition of any company, because we can getpeople to give us that information” Eric Schmidt – D9 Conference May 31st 2011 theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • Location theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • Permission theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • “But for Google, the future ofsearch is more than just masteringmobile, or becoming autonomous - its about an overall goal of "augmenting humanity.” Eric Schmidt – TechCrunch Disrupt – September 2010 theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • “…inside of a two year horizon” Marissa Mayer– Jason Kincaid Interview TechCrunch Disrupt May 2011 theMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • Schema Local SocialtheMediaFlow @NicholaStott
  • "Im interested in history, as Imwalking down the street in SanFrancisco I want my mobile deviceto tell me about the history here,think of it as a serendipity engine," Eric Schmidt TechCrunch Disrupt 2010