Sunday, June 12, 2005

Now they're complaining about Google

In his article, "Enough Keyword Searches. Just Answer My Question", James Fallows of the NYT complains that
  1. Keyword searching is only good for a limited kind of searching
  2. Keyword searching doesn't work well for complex questions
  3. The people working on new solutions to automating question answering seem to mostly be people who would now have a tough time getting into the country -- homeland security.

Of course there are advanced features in Google that allow some fielded searching but no way can you browse an index.
Fallows mentions Aquaint (advanced question answering for intelligence), a joint NSA, CIA project, as an example of work seeking to address this problem. I looked on Google but only found dead links. There's a mention on the Center for Intelligent Information Retrieval site (at UMass Amherst).

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