Google upgrades search engine with AI-powered enhancements

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Google has introduced a series of enhancements to its search engine, on August 15, incorporating advanced generative artificial intelligence (AI) features it says will enhance online information discovery and comprehension.

This recent update extends the foundation of the company’s Search Generative Experience (SGE), which was introduced in beta earlier this year. SGE empowers users with AI-driven contextual overviews and suggestions, and is intended to enhance search results.

Generative AI, a branch of AI research, concentrates on crafting novel content by drawing from existing sources. Prominent tools in this category encompass ChatGPT, capable of generating text-based outputs like poems and summaries from past knowledge and Stable Diffusion, which generates fresh image-based creations through learning from billions of images.

Image showing the newly introduced function of SGE function. Source: Google

The introduced SGE feature is currently undergoing initial testing. Once activated, users can tap a button while perusing a webpage to access an AI-generated summary of the page’s core topics. Each point is hyperlinked to the pertinent section, facilitating quick navigation within lengthy or intricate articles.

The AI engine developed by Google examines webpage content to pinpoint central themes. According to Rany Ng, Google’s product lead, this process aids individuals in “enhancing comprehension and understanding of information,” whether they’re attempting to comprehend intricate concepts or locate specific details in a recipe.

Microsoft’s Bing Chat has already introduced comparable summarization functions, preceding Google’s deployment of generative AI in February. Yet, Google asserts its advantage lies in its expertise in comprehending web content and semantics.

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Additional enhancements within SGE target facilitating the comprehension of technical subjects. AI-generated coding summaries will showcase highlighted syntax, simplifying understanding. Similarly, hovering over unfamiliar terms in AI-generated responses will reveal definitions and relevant diagrams.

Google claims that generative AI improves search functions and enables individuals to discover novel perspectives and insights more effortlessly. Nonetheless, some experts caution that excessive dependence on AI could potentially erode individual analytical abilities.

Google made updates to its privacy policy on July 1, that now allow it to take any publicly available data and use it for AI training purposes.

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