Higher Order: Google-Facebook Mashup, Anyone?

Social networking sites do provide working models of disparate interconnectedness.

The Atlantic features a smartly titled article, About Facebook–as important as Google at “ordering the web”? hmmmm. Originally launched as a campus tool to connect college students, Facebook has all but busted out for everyone now. I won’t argue its powers to order or the smorgasbord of mini applications being gobbled up for personal pages. But as far as organization of data, doesn’t any type of directory possess some mettle in the information management department?

Maybe my biggest beef with the notion is that Facebook must still inspire membership, must convince me that it’s useful in ways better than any process I have installed in my life right now. Interested parties must “buy into” the business, create a login and profile and actually provide information to order. FB’s new public search remains limited and FB members may block their profiles and information at any time. As far as I can foresee, member privatization undoes the site’s ability to access pockets of data that could potentially make it as big as Google–if it were possible.

I have to say I don’t use Facebook. I don’t use any type of social networking site, per se, and regardless of the millions of users the site may boast, there are still millions that abstain. We do, however, use search engines. So if Facebook is supposedly the next Google, I for one will not be included in any search results, as will not millions of others on a very incomplete (albeit well-ordered) planet of search. Maybe a Google-Facebook mashup?

Powerset Tease


Powerset is playing its launch very safe, measured doses, just a little bit at a time. I just read their schpiel on Power Mouse and Use Cases. Clearly Use Cases capabilities really show the versatility of language nuance that’s being built into their engine.

Build it Yourself

Platform “Porn”

If you like building things, if you love the smell of a hardware store, and you have a quirky passion for the Internet, you’re gonna dig the next big thing…

The Ning Blog gives an excellent and downright sexy explanation of platforms. These application components are right now being made available en masse to users like you and me–non-developers, with maybe enough know-how to be dangerous. Yahoo Pipes is a good example of the future of platform mash-ups, but this is only the tip of the iceberg the barest hint at the types and directions of growth rushing head-on:

  • semantic
  • commercial
  • communal

–a true cyber web of bartered cyber nuts and bolts that is hands down HOT! If the Food Network can have its food porn and real estate can have its sex appeal, then platform mash-ups are it for application and internet development.

The Question Asked

What Does Hakia Have that Google Does Not and What Does Google Have that Hakia Does Not?

Google’s Basics of Search tips say that words like who, what, and how are summarily dropped from Google search queries simply because this is how keyword-centric engines operate. I now know this is occasionally the reason for weak and untargeted results that send me clicking on over to Hakia.com to give the semantic search engine a drive. But maybe this is exactly what I’ll do the rest of my search years. There are instances in which Google returns more satisfying results and vice versa, so which search engine is better? Maybe it’s exactly in the question asked.

Who, what, how, and why questions clearly get more specific results with Hakia, but not always enough to fully answer my question and some that have left me with nothing, still.

My simplistic question posed to both, who defines a minority student? clearly illustrates the divergent results. Google is able to return a couple of results that happen to directly reflect my query with the phrase define minority students, but without any direct association with a who.

Hakia, on the other hand specifically returns results, highlighted, too, but specifically associated with the who part of the query.

Proprietary Processes Hakia Boasts

A deeper dip into Hakia reveals a bit of the proprietary processes on which this search engine is built:

OntoSem, or Ontological Semantic parser is “a linguistic theory of meaning in natural language.” OntoSem maintains a highly developed “language-independent ontology of thousands of interrelated concepts; an ontology-based English lexicon of 100,000 word senses, and counting (plus, the lexicons for several other languages under construction); and an ontological parser which ‘translates’ every sentence of the text into its text meaning representation, approximating the complete understanding of the sentence by the native speaker.”

QDEX, or Query Detection and Extraction, is an does a thorough “decomposition” of the WWW prior to any search queries being posited and stores all its possible queries waiting for a user to ask some semantic twist of its data. “The critical point in QDEX system is to be able to decompose sentences into a handful of meaningful sequences without getting lost in the combinatory explosion space.” QDEX interfaces with OntoSem in the miasma of semantic meaning. OntoSem is able to determine which of the billions of semantic options are most meaningful and worthy of indexing.

Hakia’s QDEX

Semantic Rank, if it sounds similar to Google’s Page Rank, the similarity stops there. While Google is very good at determining the authority (may not indicate relevancy) of a webpage based on linking strategies, Hakia and semantic search engines have no such algorithmic variables. Semantic Rank then ranks results by pure meaning, “based on advanced sentence analysis and concept match between the query and the best sentence of each paragraph.

Hakia SemRank