Friday, May 29, 2009

Bud-A-Bing - Befriend Microsoft's New Search Platform

Bing Type Logo - Bing, A better way to search ... A Decision Engine! [D7 Video Link] Image Credit: Edmund Jenks (2009)

Bud-A-Bing - Befriend Microsoft's New Search Platform

This week, Microsoft unvield its new -- beefed up and bundled with other stand-alone internet function programs -- search engine approach that they hope will command attention and grab a share of almost everyone's favorite activity on the computer, finding information!

While Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz continue to court each other in ongoing discussions about a search and advertising partnership, Microsoft has been improving their search program approach, once known as Windows Live Search and, prior to that as MSN Search, marketed under the name Microsoft Live Search.

In an executive conference dubbed WEB 3.0 (because the conference promoters think something major is happening at the intersection of tech and media, and think it deserves its own new hyped-up name: Web 3.0), the seventh edition of D: All Things Digital - D7, Microsoft unveiled its long-awaited search engine (formerly known as Kumo) - Bing.

Microsoft believes that breaking down search into easier to understand categories, they will be able to move one from a "Search Engine" to a "Decision Engine" because as they say in their promotional video - "The world doesn't need just another search engine, it needs a decision engine."

Microsoft is hoping, now that they have re-made Live Search and combined it with other strong Microsoft web interface programs, that the world will decide make Bing it's search buddy ... so Bud-A-Bing!

D7 Video: Microsoft's Ballmer and Walt Mossberg - Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer talks with Walt Mossberg about the company's new search engine, "Bing", and other topics at the D7 conference.

This excerpted and edited from The Channel Wire -

5 Ways Microsoft's Bing Can Be A Contender
By Chad Berndtson, The Channel Wire - May 29, 2009

Bing's the thing -- and it's finally here.

Microsoft Thursday unveiled its long-awaited search engine at the D: All Things Digital Conference in Carlsbad, Calif., with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer touting Bing as a platform for smarter, deeper search beyond what its biggest rivals, including Google, have to offer.
In addition [to the re-branding of Live Search], a number of its platforms, such as its Virtual Earth mapping, will be rebranded as Bing functions, in that case Big Maps for Enterprise. Microsoft is going to need a lot more than a rebranding effort, however, to gain back some of Google's massive search market share -- 64.2 percent in the U.S. Vs. Microsoft's paltry 8.2 percent, according to April numbers released by ComScore.

Here are five elements of the forthcoming Bing that will give it the oomph it needs to compete:

1. Visual Presentation

Microsoft's July 2008 acquisition of Powerset, a developer of semantic search technology, gives it tools for a richer, more visually agreeable search presentation than the usual digest of blue links from Google or Yahoo.

2. Keywords Help

As search words are being typed into Bing, the Bing search function offers keywords to help users narrow their searches. If Microsoft can improve these keywords so they go beyond what Google offers with its Google Suggest, it can start to sound more realistic when it claims its a "smarter search."

3. Shop-'Til-You-Droppers and Hypochondriacs

The Bing platform breaks down into four broad categories: shopping, local, travel and health. If a user enters a search query under those categories, Bing brings back results relevant to them. For example, searching in the "shopping" category would bring back search results that include pricing and availability, and a search in the health category would find symptoms or medical research. For those who spend all their time clicking "Buy it" or freaking out about a tickle in their throat on WebMD, Microsoft might get them to where they want to go faster than Google.

4. Best Match, Instant Answers and Quick Preview

Microsoft is including a few sleek features that lend more immediacy to search, including Best Match, in which Bing collects relevant results and puts what it deems to be the most relevant search link right at the top. Similar to Google's "I Feel Lucky" search function, but if you didn't know what "I Feel Lucky" does before, you're not clicking it with the intent to use it properly. Instant Answers also takes up the "I Feel Lucky" mantle with a bit more clarity, offering single-click access to information listed in search results. Finally, Quick Preview allows a user to hover over a search result and see a text excerpt from the page of that result -- a look at the search result without actually having to click through it.

5. It's Microsoft

"Microsoft's secret sauce is its marketing savvy and its persistence," wrote Everything Channel Editor/News Steve Burke in a Wednesday blog post on ChannelWeb. "Remember, there were a few people who believed Netscape was invincible until Microsoft focused all its guns on blowing the onetime browser pioneer out of the water."
Reference Here>>

Bing will be available to the general public in less than one week, starting June 3.

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