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Bing Integrates Wolfram Alpha, Google Wants to BE the Internet

Gordon Kelly


Bing Integrates Wolfram Alpha, Google Wants to BE the Internet

Two moves closer towards world domination from tech's two biggest companies today...

Firstly Microsoft continues its polishing of the increasingly impressive Bing search engine with the announcement it will integrate "computational knowledge engine" Wolfram Alpha into its results. The implementation will be incrementally rolled out and comes after Wolfram Alpha (or 'Wolfram|Alpha' to be exact, but it pains my keyboard) opened up its API little over three weeks ago.

"By using our API, Bing will be able to seamlessly access the tens of thousands of algorithms and trillions of pieces of data from Wolfram|Alpha, and directly incorporate the computations in its search results," said Wolfram spokesperson Schoeller Porter. "Microsoft's initiative and interest in Wolfram Alpha began earlier this year."

To date Wolfram Alpha has had a mixed reception so it looks a smart (and seemingly non-exclusive) move. Essentially a brilliantly clever concept in search of a user base, Wolfram Alpha is a mathematical search engine which takes queries such as London to Sydney or How tall is the Eiffel Tower compared to the Statue of Liberty? and gives you detailed results. Problem is, aside from hardcore mathematicians, it has so far proved to be largely of novelty value in day-to-day life and the learning curve for phrasing questions correctly is steep. Blend results with that of a traditional search engine however and things begin to make more sense.

In related news Google continues its arguably faster route to world domination with the announcement of 'Google Go' - its own systems programming language. Google argues "builds take a fraction of a second yet the resulting programs run nearly as quickly as comparable C or C++ code." It also claims Go will rid programmers of stack overflows, pointer arithmetic and other coder related terms I don't fully understand.

What does seem clear though is, if Go takes off, we'll be using Google to search for content created using Google. Now that's kinda scary.


Wolfram Alpha Blog Post

Google Go

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