Why Would You Want to Welcome Facebook Graph Search

July 9, 2013, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

Your favorite social networking site is now getting a new search tool. Christened Graph Search, the new feature has started rolling out to all American users of Facebook. And what makes it newsworthy? Well, this new search tool allows users more advanced search and gives detailed results too.

Graph Search had been shown off earlier this year and an early version had even come out in January. It looks like developers have been observing the tool and injecting more improvements into it for the past so many months. And now, after six months, Facebook believes it is ready for mass release.

Welcome Graph Search! Aren’t we supposed to say that, folks?  Before you come up with an answer, let’s help you dive deeper into the new prop that Facebook has brought unto us.

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Going by what Lars Rasmussen, the engineering director of the project, believes, Facebook users have been finding trouble looking for the search box, which was placed at the top of every Facebook page. But now, the social media major has made the box more visible and words are used to explicitly describe the purpose of the tool.

And, this new tool lets people conduct advanced searches  with metadata stored on Facebook such as “Friends who like a particular music/ restaurant” or something of that sort.

While making the search tool Facebook engineers adapted different algorithms to consider the various methods people use to express interest in a topic.

However, the Facebook team is still working to improve the tool. Although Graph Search tool offers quick search results, it cannot yet find information in status updates. Also, the tool does not incorporate information from third-party apps such as Yelp or Instagram. Above all, the tool is not available on Facebook’s mobile apps and most people use the site through smartphones.

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If you thought Facebook’s Graph Search is a replacement to Google search, it wouldn’t be so. According to Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg, the company is making things easier for users. Graph Search mainly focus on structured data instead Google’s familiar search engine that takes the keywords and matches them with the most relevant web pages that include the term.

In other words, Facebook would analyze  the virtual check boxes, which are filled by people on the site – like their favorite movies and places.

Such kind of search has a host of challenges. First of all, it comes with minimum database and secondly, privacy could be a major concern here.

However, Facebook promises that this new search tool will reveal only the permitted information of the user. If someone likes to hide their particular details like their religion and location it would be possible via the privacy setting options in the site.

Considering the user base, Facebook may not find it too easy to handle the large flow of data coming in. Reportedly, its 1.1 billion users post 3.3 million new items every minute in a single month. The most frequent queries are for people and potential dates. Photo searches come in second place and is followed by searches for particular restaurants bars, hotels, stores and gyms.

Well, the developers are working to introduce the mobile version of the app as soon as possible and also trying to add features suggesting movies and books a person might like based on their interest.

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