How time flies! Another week has zipped by, and it's time once again for our Friday roundup of key tech stories from the past few days.
BERT helps Google to deliver more relevant search results
Google Search processes more than 5 billion searches per day, and a fair number of those (roughly 15% according to Google themselves) use queries that the search engine has never seen before. So how does The Big G deliver an accurate answer when it's completely unfamiliar with the question?
Well, we haven't yet reached the point where computers can understand word strings in the same way humans can, but Google announced this week that they'd taken a great big step towards that goal. BERT (Bidirectional Encoder Representations from Transformers) is a neural network-based technology that helps Google Search to "process words in relation to all the other words in a sentence, rather than one by one in order".
What this means is that, in theory, Google will no longer overlook the importance of a word like 'to' in the query '2019 brazil traveller to usa need a visa'. On its own, the word 'to' may seem unimportant, but it has a big impact on the meaning of that search term as a whole. This is one example of how BERT will help Google Search to deliver more relevant answers.
This change will supposedly impact the Google results shown for 1 in 10 English-language searches. Read Google's own blog post on BERT here.
Pixel 4 has arrived
In other Google-related news, the company's latest smartphone - Pixel 4 - is now available.
Pixel 4's key selling points include:
- Google assistant
- Motion sense
- Improved camera
Not to mention the very colourful advert, which you can view on Twitter.
The news - brought to you by Facebook
Finally, some US users spotted a new feature in the Facebook app this week. Facebook News will feature content from publishers like BuzzFeed News and The Wall Street Journal, some - but not all - of whom will be paid for their participation.
The shiny new Facebook News tab will be curated by human editors, and users can personalise the tab to make sure they're only seeing stories that interest them. This feature hasn't rolled out in the UK yet - it's not even widespread in America at the moment - but we could be seeing it on our phones before long.
Follow @Designer_Webs on Twitter for more tech news and insight!
Follow @Designer_Webs Get a Web Design Quote