[This article is originally published in thestar.com.my - Uploaded by AIRS Member: Anthony Frank]

The best search engine when it comes to privacy and results on par with Google is Startpage, a Dutch company. — dpa

Most people don't really think much further than Google when it comes to search engines. After all, there's a reason that everyone uses the verb "to Google" when they want to look something up.

But is Google the best search engine, objectively speaking?
In terms of search results, the answer is yes, and also in terms of user satisfaction.

But in terms of data protection, Google has some serious problems.
The best search engine when it comes to privacy and results on par with Google is Startpage, a Dutch company that also scores well when its apps are considered. The data protection regulations are much better, and the engine has many of Google's best features as well.

Startpage allows users to choose language and region manually just like Google. The results are essentially the same because the company uses the same technology as Google – the only difference being that it doesn't use trackers to store your data.

During test runs, Startpage was also able to deal with typos and vague search terms just as well as the US tech giant. – dpa
Categorized in Search Engine

[This article is originally published in searchenginejournal.com written by Brandon Stapper - Uploaded by AIRS Member: Jeremy Frink]

Google has dominated the search engine market for most of its 20-year existence. Today, most SEO efforts mainly revolve around the popular search engine.

Google holds a massive 92.74 percent search engine market share worldwide, according to StatCounter, as of October.

While Google is truly a force to be reckoned with, some view its dominance in the internet search space as problematic.

The company, with its large network of Internet-related services and products, owns a vast wealth of information on its users and we don’t exactly know all the ways they are using it.

Privacy concerns are among the top reasons why some people prefer using other search engines instead of Google.

We wanted to know which Google search alternative is favored by marketers, so we asked our Twitter community.

What Is Your Favorite Google Search Alternative?

Here are the results from this #SEJSurveySays poll question.

According to SEJ’s Twitter audience:

  • 36 percent chose DuckDuckGo as their favorite Google search alternative.
  • 32 percent said their top pick is Twitter.
  • 30 percent their favorite alternative search engine is Bing.
  • 2 percent favor Yandex as a Google search alternative.

What is your favorite Google search alternative

read more...

Categorized in Search Engine

There was a time when you couldn’t get a chicken soup recipe while sitting on the toilet. Strange but true! It used to be that you asked your mom, or your friends, a book, or your local librarian for information. Today, instead of picking up the phone, everyone from bearded urban millennials to grandmas and dairy farmers turn to one place above all others: the Internet. How do people search? Who gets clicked? Why does search matter so much?

There is limitless information and entertainment, available (just about) wherever you are and available whenever you want it. It’s no surprise that lightning-fast Google has replaced the Dewey Decimal System as the primary means for finding out what you need to know.

SEO: the difference between being seen or ignored

But in this vast sea of cyber information, it’s easy for the websites of many businesses and individuals to get lost or outranked by bigger players. It’s the reason SEO (search engine optimization) is a hot topic. SEO is almost always the difference between being seen and being ignored online.

But you don’t need a specialized degree to understand why sites like Google and Bing rank their results the way they do. Getting the best of your business to appear in the top of search results starts by learning how people use search engines, and then tailoring your website’s information in a way that it’s most likely to reach a searcher’s eyes (hint: it’s how we crafted this article, from bare bones to final draft).

What Search Engines Do

People want their search results to be as relevant and reliable as possible, so search engines work to ensure that the answer to a user’s search query fits the bill. More information isn’t always better, and there’s usually a good reason for why certain results appear farther down on the list than others (not always though).

Googles mission is to organize the worlds information and make it universally accessible and useful.

Search engines use something called algorithms to rate and rank websites within any given list of search results. The better the ranking, the closer to the top of the search results the site will appear.

Which Search Engine Gets the Most Use?

Most of us (a whopping 64% as of October 2016) head straight to Google when we want to know something. Bing, the next most popular search engine, is the engine of choice for 22% of users.

google accounts for 64%25 of search engine usage

If you’re just learning the basics of SEO, it makes sense to start by focusing on ranking high with Google to capture the highest possible number of leads.

A caveat: you’ll never be able to know all of the factors at play (and Google doesn’t want you to, since there will always be some who would exploit the system). It’s also unlikely you will be able to keep up with the changing factors all the time because Google changes it’s search algorithm almost daily. But having a basic idea about what Google is looking for will help you get on the first page of results.

How People Use Search Engines

You may have been taught to put your search queries in quotes, or you may be more of a “voice command” searcher. While everyone has a different search style, there are some basic rules that dictate how we approach things when we’re looking for information.

Full or Part Phrase Searchers

According to research from Blue Nile, about half of searchers use full phrases (i.e. “How do I cook a lasagna”), while the other half use fragments (“how cook lasagna”).

However, nobody wants to reach just half the people searching for their information, so creating a page that hits on a variety of relevant keywords and search terms is necessary.

There are typically three types of queries that people make:

  • “Do” queries (see lasagna example above)
  • “Go” queries (when they want to reach a specific page)
  • “Know” queries (when they want detailed information on a specific topic)

In order for your page to reach the people who you are looking for, it needs to be composed to be relevant for the specific category of query the person entered. To make this targeted approach, it’s important to get a full grasp on what your information is really delivering — or the message you want it to deliver.

Who Gets Clicked On

The first page of search results are coveted. It’s the beachside real estate in the world of SEO, and everyone wants to live there. Some beaches are better than others because of the commercial aspects of top rankings.

94% of people scroll right past the paid ads

There are no shortcuts to that spot, not even through paid advertising. A 2011 study based on 28 millions users and 1.4 billion searches in the UK found that 94% of people scroll right past the paid ads, ignoring them in favor of the natural results.

People choose the 3 organic results 68% of the time

The study also found that users chose one of the top three organic search results 68% of the time. For the pages that don’t hold one of those three coveted spots, it means significantly less traffic.

It’s not always enough to be on the front page. You have to be there based on merit rather than through ad placement, and you have to rank above pretty much all of the millions of other relevant listings.

Why SEO is Important for a Website

Search engines are smart in a way different than human beings are. They rely on context and keywords to accurately deduce your page’s relevance for a specific search term. And their decision, while potentially flawed, can make the difference between the first page of search results and the last.

This is why search engine optimization can give your site the fuel it needs to appear higher in search results. Adhering and adapting to the changes in SEO best practices can mean big things for a business. It can make your brand more visible, increase web traffic, enhance credibility, and bring in more revenue.

search-improvement-graph.jpg

Search results bring more traffic to a website than social media, according to a study conducted by Outbrain. They also bring traffic that is less likely to bounce. Optimizing your site for search engines isn’t just smart business—it’s necessary for being seen in the first place.

The variables that dictate how people search and how search engines display results may always be changing, but it’s the nature of the game. In order for a website to stay relevant and rank high, it’s essential to stay ahead of the changing algorithms and trends in user behavior in online search.

Author : Kent Campbell

Source : http://www.business2community.com/seo/people-search-understanding-landscape-01775943#50cWDMSDDv3t783W.97

Categorized in Search Engine

When you go online to search for something you either go to search engines such as Google or Bing. You probably think that if it doesn’t show up on these search engines, then it doesn’t exist, wrong! Believe it or not, there are things on the web that will never show up on your tradition search engine, no matter how hard you may try.

 

Why? Well, because a password is needed or the site belongs to a private network of organizations. I’m sorry to disappoint you if you thought that Google and Bing were the powerful search engines that have it all. If those tech giants had everything, neither the deep web search engines nor the hidden web would have existed.

 

Google and Bing follow one hyperlink after another and as a result doesn’t get everything you would want in the results. To be able to find the hidden things of the web, you have to dig a little deeper than usual, but I will show you how to do that and where to look. Hopefully, you can find what you need in the following deep web search engines.

 

What is the Hidden Web?

 

When you hear or read about the hidden or deep web, it’s anything behind a paywall, something with a password, or dynamically generated content on the fly and didn’t have a permanent URL. These are the things you are not going to find with a traditional Google search. So, where can you look? Thankfully, there are deep web search engines available on the web.

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

In this post, let’s find out top 10 best deep web search engines to explore hidden web.

 

1. TechXtra

 

The Best Hidden Web Search Engines - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

TechXtra is one of the best deep web search engines where you can search for content that has to do with Math, Engineering, and Computing. You can search for things such as technical data, industry news, classifieds, learning resources, full-text Eprints, and relevant website information. The design may not be as pretty as you might want it to be, but if you are a student who is looking for this kind of information, now you know where to look.

 

2. Infomine

 

Infomine is another great deep web search engine option for your hidden web needs. It is another site created by many online libraries of the United States. Here you can find things such as articles, books, notes, question papers, solutions, etc. The information that you find on this search engine is from universities such as Wake Forest University, University of California, University of Detroit and California State University.

 

How to search the Hidden web with Infomine - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

This hidden deep web search engine gets its information from places such as electronic books, databases, online library card catalogs, electronic journals, directories of researchers, bulletin boards, mailing lists, articles, and many other resources.

 

 

 

 

3. DeepWebTech

 

With DeepWebTech you can choose between five search engines. If one doesn’t work for you, you can always count on the other to help you find what you need. Just like Chrome, DeepWebTech also counts with browser plugins for you to use if you are searching for something in particular.

 

 Deep Web Technolgies Hidden web search engine - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

With this deep web search engine, you can find information on a subject such as medicine, science, and business. If Google is not giving you what you are looking for, you can count on these deep web search engines getting the job done.

 

4. WWW The Virtual Library

 

WWW The Virtual Library also has a lot to offer. This hidden web search engine was created by Tim Berners-Lee and is the oldest deep web search engines out there. This dark search engine is not the most popular one out there but can say it was the first one of its kind.

 

The first Hidden Web search engine for Dark Web - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

So, isn’t it strange that it finds a place in the list of Invisible Web resources? WWW Virtual Library has quite a few useful resources on different subjects. It arranges all the categories in alphabetical order, so they are easier to find. You can choose from categories such as education, engineering, society, law, recreation, international affairs and more!

 

 

 

 

5. InfoPlease

 

If you are looking for an educational portal, then you should visit InfoPlease. It features all sorts of additional features for you to use. The search bar is located on the upper right-hand corner for your searching needs. You can enjoy things such as almanacs, encyclopedias, an atlas, and biographies.

 

InfoPlease Hidden web search engine - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

Infoplease is not just a one of the best deep web search engines, but it also has additional tools such as a Calculator, Spell Checker, Place, Finder, Periodic Table, Conversion Tool, Distance Calculator, Fact Monster, and a Perpetual Calendar.

 

6. Clutsy

 

Clutsy is in a class all it’s own because of all the channels it offers for your searches. Besides the traditional things such as news, images, purchases, etc. it looks for its results from a large number of places. For example, it searches in directories such as Daypop, Blogdigger, IceRocket and more.

 

Yippy Clutsy hidden Deep web search engine - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

Since things change over time, when you go to Clutsy, you will notice a name change to Yippy. I kept the original name, just in case someone remembered it by that name.

 

7. The Internet Archive

 

When you are looking for something on the Internet, one of those things are probably movies, audio or music, right? The hidden web is also full of this stuff; you just have to know where to look.

 

The Internet Archive for the Hidden Web - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

On The Internet Archive, you are going to have access to things such as movie, music, etc. that I mentioned earlier, but you can also enjoy printed materials. Do you want to see what a particular website looked like back in the day? The Internet Archive also lets you see older and saved versions of sites, I hope you have time since there are over 55 billion sites to look at.

 

 

 

 

8. Science.gov

 

If you are looking for something that you would only find on a site from the government, then you might want to check out Science.gov. It is a site that explores over 60 databases and more than 2200 websites from 15 federal agencies.

 

Science Gov Hidden Deeb Web search engine - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

If you need certain information for that science project, this is the place to go. The site offers 200 million pages of authoritative U.S government science information and development and research results are among that information.

 

9. Wolfram Alpha

 

With Wolfram Alpha you get a computational web search engine, in other words, you can enjoy a deep web search engine that has a significant amount of data for you to take advantage of. The site has categories such as:

  • Mathematics
  • Step-by-step solutions
  • Words % Linguistics
  • Units and Measure
  • Chemistry
  • Date & Times
  • Art & Design
  • Music
  • Astronomy
  • Engineering
  • Food & Nutrition
  • Shopping
  • Earth Sciences and more!

 

Worlfram Alpha Deep Web Search engine for Hidden web - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

Once you choose a topic, the site gives you so many options that you won´t know where to start. For example, let us say you choose Chemistry. In that category, you can either have the site give you chemical formulas, Chemical quantities, chemical solutions, functional groups, and the list keeps going.

 

 

 

 

10. FindLaw

 

Hopefully, you will never have to search for something that happened to you, but if you ever get into any legal trouble, this is the place to go. FindLaw is a site where you can have access to a vast repository of legal information you can use for free.

 

FindLaw Deep Web search engine for Hidden Web - Top 10 Best Deep Web Search Engines to Explore Hidden Web

 

FindLaw has one of the biggest online lawyer directories you can find on the Internet. You can either use the site to know more about U.S law, get yourself a lawyer, learn more about particular legal topics and use the Law forums. I’m sure the forums will be of big help since it’s almost certain you will come across some legal information you don’t understand.

 

The Pro Review from TechReviewPro

 

The hidden web is full all of the kinds of useful information and is perfectly legal to use. I’m sure it’s full of other illegal information one should not be looking at, but that’s a whole different story. With the information you will find on this list, you have enough data to keep you busy for hours and hours.

 

As you can see, the deep web search engines are easy to use and give you the information you are looking for. The hidden web has a lot more sites than what I have mentioned on my list of deep web search engines. Have you discovered something on the hidden web you think other will find useful? Share it in the comments for all to see.

 

 

Author:  Rahul Dubey

Source:  https://techreviewpro.com

Categorized in Search Engine

1- What Are the Best Search Engines of 2016?

Most people don't want three dozen search engines, especially people who are not trained internet users. Most people want a single search engine that delivers three key features:

  1. Relevant results  (results you are actually interested in)
  2. Uncluttered, easy to read interface
  3. Helpful options to broaden or tighten a search

With this criteria, several Reader Favorite Search Engines come to mind. These 11 search sites should meet 99% of the searching needs of a regular everyday user.

Click to see the first Top Search Engine of 2016...

Submit a Site: you are welcome to suggest a search engine for inclusion in this list by sending us a message at our Facebook page.

2- Duck Duck Go Search

Duck Duck Go Search

At first, DuckDuckGo.com looks like Google. But there are many subtleties that make this spartan search engine different. DuckDuckGo has some slick features, like 'zero-click' information (all your answers are found on the first results page). DuckDuckgo offers disambiguation prompts (helps to clarify what question you are really asking). And the ad spam is much less than Google. Give DuckDuckGo.com a try... you might really like this clean and simple search engine.

3- Bing Search

Bing Search

Bing is Microsoft's attempt at unseating Google, and arguably the second-most-popular search engine today. Bing used to be MSN search until it was updated in summer of 2009. Touted as a 'decision engine', Bing tries to support your researching by offering suggestions in the leftmost column, while also giving you various search options across the top of the screen. Things like 'wiki' suggestions, 'visual search', and 'related searches' might be very useful to you. Bing is not dethroning Google in the near future, no. But Bing is definitely worth trying. 

4- Dogpile Search

Dogpile Search

Years ago, Dogpile preceded Google as the fast and efficient choice for web searching. Things changed in the late 1990's, Dogpile faded into obscurity, and Google became king. But today, Dogpile is coming back, with a growing index and a clean and quick presentation that is testimony to its halcyon days.  If you want to try a search tool with pleasant presentation and helpful crosslink results, definitely try Dogpile!

5- Yippy Search

Yippy Search

Yippy is a Deep Web engine that searches other search engines for you. Unlike the regular Web, which is indexed by robot spider programs, Deep Web pages are usually harder to locate by conventional search. That's where Yippy becomes very useful. If you are searching for obscure hobby interest blogs, obscure government information, tough-to-find obscure news, academic research and otherwise-obscure content, then Yippy is your tool. 

6- Google Scholar Search

Google Scholar Search

Google Scholar is a special version of Google.  This search engine will help you win debates.

You see, Google Scholar focuses on scientific and hard-research academic material that has been subjected to scrutiny by scientists and scholars. Example content includes:  graduate theses, legal and court opinions, academic publications, medical research reports, physics research papers, and economics and world politics explanations.

If you are looking for serious information that can stand up in a heated debate with educated people, then forget regular Google... Google Scholar is where you want to go to arm yourself with high powered sources!

7- Ask.com Search

Ask.com

The Ask search engine is a longtime name on the World Wide Web. The super-clean interface rivals the other major search engines, and the search options are as good as Google or Bing or DuckDuckGo. The results groupings are what really make Ask.com stand out. The presentation is arguably cleaner and easier to read than Google or Yahoo! or Bing, and the results groups seem to be more relevant. Decide for yourself if you agree... give Ask.com a whirl, and compare it to the other search engines you like.

8- Mahalo 'Learn Anything' Search

Mahalo 'Learn Anything' Search

Mahalo is the one 'human-powered' search site in this list, employing a committee of editors to manually sift and vet thousands of pieces of content.  This means that you'll get fewer Mahalo hit results than you will get at Bing or Google. But it also means that most Mahalo results have a higher quality of content and relevance (as best as human editors can judge).

Mahalo also offers regular web searching in addition to asking questions.  Depending on which of the two search boxes you use at Mahalo, you will either get direct content topic hits or suggested answers to your question.

Try Mahalo.  You might like it enough to even become an editor there.

9- Webopedia Search

Webopedia Search

Webopedia is one of the most useful websites on the World Wide Web. Webopedia is an encyclopedic resource dedicated to searching techno terminology and computer definitions. Teach yourself what 'domain name system' is, or teach yourself what 'DDRAM' means on your computer. Webopedia is absolutely a perfect resource for non-technical people to make more sense of the computers around them. 

10- Yahoo! Search (and More)

Yahoo! Search

Yahoo! is several things: it is a search engine, a news aggregator, a shopping center, an emailbox, a travel directory, a horoscope and games center, and more. This 'web portal' breadth of choice makes this a very helpful site for Internet beginners. Searching the Web should also be about discovery and exploration, and Yahoo! delivers that in wholesale quantities. 

11- The Internet Archive Search

The Internet Archive Search

The Internet Archive is a favorite destination for longtime Web lovers. The Archive has been taking snapshots of the entire World Wide Web for years now, allowing you and me to travel back in time to see what a web page looked like in 1999, or what the news was like around Hurricane Katrina in 2005. You won't visit the Archive daily, like you would Google or Yahoo or Bing, but when you do have need to travel back in time, use this search site. 

12- Google Search

Google Search

Google is the reigning king of 'spartan searching', and is the single most used search engine in the world. While it doesn't offer all the shopping center features of Yahoo! or the human curation of Mahalo, Google is fast, relevant, and the largest single catalogue of web pages available today.

Make sure you try the Google 'images', 'maps' and 'news' features... they are outstanding services for locating photos, geographic directions, and news headlines. 

Source : lifewire

Categorized in Search Engine

Mobile networking is rapidly overgrowing desktop navigation and one of the main uses of it is for searching for relevant and urgent information.

Search Engines are the most visited websites through mobile devices (Google Insights).

Mobile search is not just a part of web search engines anymore, instead it has grown as a specialized branch of mobile content for itself that is rapidly growing. Mobile search engines are the gateway to mobile content for most users. Google is the undisputed leader of desktop search engines, but when it comes to mobile searching, the battle for the throne is still raging and finally the one that provides the most relevant results wins. Understanding how users search through their smartphones is the key to the mobile search approach, for instance, location is an extremely important factor in mobile searches.

Let’s take a look at some of the best search engines available for mobile devices and analyse their features.

Top Search Engines for Mobile Devices


Google Search (iPod / Android)

Google is still among the great giants of searching, for mobile devices too. The Google Search app has a beautiful simple and clean interface with a search field and links to other applications, voice search and Google Goggles, a feature that lets you snap a photo to find information about products, landmarks, etc. The auto-complete feature suggests terms as you type, reducing search time by cutting spare typing.


yahoo search mobileYahoo! Search (iPhone / Android)

Yahoo offers a unique approach to the way they show mobile results, offering a map with a link to directions and a CTC button when looking for local results, it is a very useful feature, but the application does not offer anything else different from other applications. It also provides a link of trending searches when you access the application.


bing mobileBing Mobile (iPad / iPhone / Android)

Bing’s mobile application has a nice and sleek look, rapid access to images, videos, maps, etc. It shows the results that your Facebook friends liked and has Bing Vision, a feature that lets you recognize bar and QR codes, book covers, pictures, etc.


ask mobile (iPhone / Android)

Ask is not a traditional search engine. It is based on questions the users ask and show web results other users responses as an answer. You can either type a question or use voice search.



duck duck go mobileDuck Duck Go (iPhone / Android)

Duck Duck Go is not different from any standard search engine in terms of results, but it has some unique features that make it worth trying. It uses over 50 information sources to give you relevant data just above links, so you don’t have to spare clicks. Also it does not track you, providing total privacy.


topsy
Topsy

Topsy is, as they call themselves, a social time machine, which means it is a search engine based on social media sites. It shows results based on popular links and the influence of the people who cites them, and enables users to show those results on a timeline. It does not have an app, but Topsy’s site is nicely adapted for mobile devices.


chacha mobile
ChaCha (iPhone / Android)

ChaCha is a search engine that answers questions based on a “human search engine” with location-based features. It accepts text or voice queries and provides a text response back. ChaCha is free for the moment and supported by ads. ChaCha can be faster than regular smartphones search engines, but sometimes it takes minutes to answer a question and it only gives one response for query.



wolfram alpha mobileWolfram Alpha (iPhone / Android)

Wolfram Alpha directly answers factual queries. It also offers multitude of features, including plotting graphs, calculations and technical data about anything you can imagine. It is more than a search engine, it does not only gives you links, it gives relevant data and information. The interface is very simple, clean and, just as the application, efficient.

blekko mobileBlekko (iPhone / Android)

Blekko is a spam-free search engine that allows vertical searches based on the use of slahstag (like the folders on a computer). The application suggest its own slashtags and lets you navigate from one to another.



dogpile mobileDogpile (iPhone)

Dogpile is a metasearch engine, it instantly searches through seven popular search engines and decides which results are the more relevant to your query. Among its features are web and image search, camera scan and sharing options.

More Mobile Search Engines

abphoneabphone

Abphone is a media browser which is based on keywords and dedicated to finding images and videos so that you could download them on your phone.

alien pants

Alien Pants

Alien Pants operates GTIP, an SMS-based customer support, hints and cheat service within the online and mobile gaming community.

AOIAOL

AOL is the mobile portal of AOLs search engine.

etools

eTools

It is a Swedish meta-search engine which queries more than 10 biggest search sites.

kanuuu

Kannuu

Kannuu provides search software that is able to run on mobile devices, the engine is geared towards the mobile Internet, using predictive software to speed searches.

medio

Medio

Medio runs a mobile search engine which uses mobile analytics to provide users with one-stop search results. Its mobile adverts are targeted with the search results.

 

mcnMobile Cotent Networks

Mobile Content Networks combines vertical search with its Taxonomy Engine so that they do their best in order to provide accurate search results. With MCN you also can place targeted ads with search results.

Try the solutions you liked and choose the best ones for you. Probably, you have other variants you use which were not mentioned… Please, write them in the comments. Let’s make a full list together!

Source : zeendo.com

 

Categorized in Search Engine

Engineers at the search engine giant combine the two major quantum computing techniques. 

Quantum computers can in theory solve problems it would take regular digital computers longer than the age of the universe to crack. Now scientists at Google and their colleagues have developed a machine that combines the two major approaches to quantum computing into one, work that might help researchers build quantum computers that can outclass conventional computers.

Whereas digital computers represent data as ones and zeroes -- binary digits known as bits represented by flicking tiny switch-like transistors either on or off -- quantum computers use quantum bits, or qubits that are both on and off at the same time. This enables them to each carry out two calculations at once. The number of calculations that quantum computers can run rises exponentially with the number of qubits they have -- two qubits allow four calculations simultaneously, three allow eight, four allow 16, and so on.

Quantum computers rely on how the universe becomes fuzzy and surreal at its very smallest levels. Quantum physics, the best explanation yet for how all known particles behave, suggests that atoms and the other construction blocks of the universe are capable of seemingly existing in two or more places at once or spinning in opposite directions at the same time, fragile paradoxical states known as superpositions.

Previous research found that a quantum computer with 300 qubits could perform more calculations in an instant than there are atoms in the universe. This suggests that quantum computers might be able to solve classically intractable problems, ones that would take regular computers thousands or even billions of years.

There are currently two main approaches toward quantum computation. Standard quantum computers follow what is known as the gate model, which links qubits up into simple circuits known as quantum logic gates that can each perform a basic operation. To carry out a calculation, one tunes each qubit to a given setting to encode the elements of the problem at hand, much as a digital computer might encode a number as a bit or collection of bits. One then manipulates these qubits step by step with a sequence of quantum logic gates called a quantum algorithm, and then scans the system to get the answer.

In contrast, the commercially available quantum computers that currently exist practice a strategy known as adiabatic quantum computing. In this approach, one starts off with a set of noninteracting qubits that are kept at their lowest energy state, called the ground state. One then carefully evolves this system into a set of qubits whose interactions at its ground state represent the correct answer for the specific problem that the researchers encoded it to solve.

The appeal of adiabatic quantum computing lies not only in its simplicity, but also in its versatility. Standard quantum computers use algorithms that each only solve a very specific problem, such as cracking encryption, whereas adiabatic quantum computers can in theory solve any kind of problem, said study lead author Rami Barends, a physicist at Google. Previous research suggests that adiabatic quantum computers are especially good at optimization problems, which involve finding the best solution from all feasible solutions, such as the shortest route connecting multiple destinations, or the most stable form of molecules — the former problem could help Mars rovers better explore the red planet, while the latter could lead to better drugs or catalysts.

 

However, adiabatic quantum computers are embroiled in controversy — some researchers argue that they may not be any better at solving classically intractable problems than regular computers. One reason that adiabatic quantum computers face challenges with such problems is because they have limited interactions between all their qubits.

"Connecting one qubit to any other becomes really challenging," Barends said.

In contrast, in standard quantum computers, one can construct any type of interaction one wants between qubits, and between any number of qubits, Barends said. In addition, adiabatic quantum computers are vulnerable to disturbances that can disrupt the superpositions that make qubits work, whereas error correction techniques can protect standard quantum computers from such disruptions.

The Google-led project combines the advantages of both the main forms of quantum computing by using a standard quantum computer to simulate an adiabatic quantum computer. The hope is that larger-scale versions of this machine one day may "solve complex problems in nature, from physics to chemistry and biology," Barends said.

"That this is possible in principle has been known for more than a decade, but an experimental demonstration has been lacking," said Daniel Lidar, director of the University of Southern California's Center for Quantum Information Science and Technology in Los Angeles, who did not take part in this research.

The new machine consists of up to nine qubits and up to more than 1,000 quantum logic gates. Each qubit consists of a superconducting cross-shaped structure made of aluminum film deposited on sapphire, and the nine qubits are all lined up in a row. Each qubit resonates at a specific frequency, and by tuning qubit frequencies to or away from each other, interactions between qubits can be turned on or off.

To simulate adiabatic quantum computing, Barends and his colleagues had the system evolve over the course of many tiny steps in time. In experiments, the simulations could implement the kind of interactions between qubits needed to solve classically intractable problems, something not possible with present-day adiabatic quantum computers, Barends said.

"This work demonstrates key building blocks for implementing a digital emulation of adiabatic quantum computing in a superconducting qubit system," said experimental physicist and electrical engineer William Oliver at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge, who did not participate in this study.

Lidar noted that early small-scale devices such as this new quantum computer cannot tackle classically intractable problems.

"In the very short term — that is, with devices of fewer than 40 qubits — the main interest is in understanding sources of errors," Lidar said.

However, "in a couple of years, it may be possible to work with devices having more than 40 qubits," Lidar said. That point may mark "the achievement of 'quantum supremacy,'" Lidar said -- when quantum computers outclass regular computers.

Source:  https://www.insidescience.org/content/googles-new-quantum-computer-may-be-best-both-worlds/4036 

Categorized in Search Engine

On Wednesday Google kicked off its I/O developer conference by unveiling a series of new artificial intelligence-powered products, including a messaging app with a virtual assistant and and a home speaker with a voice interface. Given what we’ve seen in the explosion of AI assistants and software bots from other companies, you’d expect Google to brand these products’ connective tissue with a personality and a name — Apple has Siri, Amazon has Alexa, and Microsoft has Cortana.

Instead, Google’s new AI assistant is just called… Google Assistant. What used to be known as Google Now, the predictive assistant inside Android, has been broadened into a bigger initiative to bring those capabilities further into the real world, bolstered by years spent building out its extensive Knowledge Graph and honing its ability to parse human language. It’s an indication of Google’s ambitions for the product that it wants us to simply call it Google.

Today, we have an understanding of 1 billion entities: people, places, and things, and the relationships of them in the real world," said CEO Sundar Pichai onstage Wednesday. "We can do things which we never thought we could do before."

In the mobile chat app Allo, Google Assistant can understand follow-up queries and perform complex operations on your behalf. Google Home, a new Amazon Echo-like speaker, can manage your daily routine and pull information and media from the web. One uses text, the other voice. But both are powered by the same core Google software. "We think of this as building each user their own individual Google," Pichai said.

Starting with products like Allo and Home, Google is extending its search-like capabilities to solve real-world problems. Conversations with friends, decisions about services, purchasing, media consumption — these are all ways Google can now serve us away from the web browser and even beyond the realm of the smartphone.

This shift will take time, and it will be challenging. With Alexa, Amazon has become an early leader in the digital assistant and smart home spaces, so much so that Pichai name-dropped the company onstage at I/O. Amazon succeeded in part by positioning Alexa as a do-it-all AI butler with a familiarity you can recognize and rely on.

Alexa may not be anywhere near as powerful as Google search — it certainly can’t process follow-up questions and complex queries at the level Google’s assistant can. But Amazon’s software is teaching consumers a vocabulary with which to interact with Amazon and third-party services. Using the Echo is simple, and it works. Amazon has also racked up an impressive suite of integrations, making Alexa more powerful by way of connecting it to other company’s products. Google hasn’t yet announced a similar set of tools for developers to unlock and tap into its capabilities.

Competing with Alexa is not just about overcoming Amazon’s early lead and its third-party perks. It’s also about teaching consumers to treat Google as more than a search engine. That reorientation is likely why the company doesn’t want to add another name like Siri or Alexa into the mix. It wants its name being uttered in homes and into phones all around the world. The company’s AI assistant isn’t just called Google, it is Google. That’s going to take some getting used to.

"That search box is so iconic," Scott Huffman, Google’s vice president of engineering for search, told The Verge. "It's such a strong thing in people's minds. It's associated with 'I express my need in a really simple way and I get back public information.'" But, he adds, "it's been a bit of a leap for our users ... to now think of that box as a place where I can also call grandma."

The expansion from searching the internet to using Google for any need that can be accomplished with an internet service is central to the company’s future. The number of things Google can’t do is shrinking. Google knows your weekly calendar, your flight times, your dinner reservations, your music and TV and movie tastes, who your friends are, how often you talk to them, and much, much more about your personal life. Soon, Google will be in your home, learning even more about you. With this information, it can reach deeper into the fabric of everyday life.

It sounds unsettling, and Alphabet-owned Nest even resisted the urge to release an Echo-like product for fear that consumers would reject the idea of Google listening to us in our living rooms. Yet what Amazon did, perhaps to Google’s benefit, was show how willing we are to set aside our fear of being eavesdropped by corporations in exchange for the convenience the software provides. The tone set at I/O, and the future that Google is promising, represents a powerful vision of technology-assisted living, perhaps powerful enough to overcome uneasiness about always-listening software.

Just as Larry Page and Sergey Brin created a searchable roadmap for the early consumer internet, Google believes it can now help us navigate the real world and alleviate us of its more mundane tasks. This time around, the company wants to use the power of its search engine and AI advancements to turn our everyday activities into learnable data points. It feels only inevitable before more and more of those activities are performed by Google, on your behalf and with you needing to ask.

It’s a bold move, and it may fall flat on its face. Google has struggled with messaging in the past. Google Home may also fail to compete with an established competitor like Alexa, even with an eventual feature set that proves more powerful than the Echo’s.

Yet if Google succeeds, it could become an early and indisputable leader in what is shaping up to be an AI arms race. Part of that will involve teaching consumers that the name we’ve come to trust for finding information on the internet is just as capable at reaching through the screen and assisting us in the real world.

Source:  http://www.theverge.com/2016/5/20/11721278/google-ai-assistant-name-vs-alexa-siri

Categorized in Search Engine

 

Using search engines effectively is now a key skill for researchers, but could more be done to equip young researchers with the tools they need. Here, Dr Neil Jacobs and Rachel Bruce from Jisc’s digital infrastructure team share their top ten resources for researchers from across the web.

Every click of the mouse, every search box, needs to work hard to make the best use of a researcher’s time.

For each gem of a resource that a researcher discovers, there may be a dozen abandoned web pages, armies of half-read abstracts and false leads. Knowing how, and where, to search for resources is vital for saving time and getting quickly to the results that matter. 

One of the best ways to increase your hit-rate is by going beyond Google to a specific academic search engine or database.

Here, we outline the top search engines and resources that work hard for researchers to help them get the figures, answers and arguments they need.

Scientific queries

WolframAlpha

What is it? A so-called ‘answer engine’, the service answers queries directly based on the search terms rather than providing a list of results.

Key features: Search for information about domain names and compare websites. It also has various maths and statistics functions.

Neil says:

“WolframAlpha is probably the most innovative of the answer engines. It attempts to answer free-text questions or provide information about things rather than supply a list of web sites tagged as connected with a subject.”

Open access search engines

CORE

What is it? An experimental service, allowing keyword and semantic search of over 10 million open access articles.

Key feature: If you find an article you like, CORE will find similar ones by analysing the text of that article.

BASE

What is it? BASE is one of the world's most voluminous search engines especially for academic open access web resources from over 2,000 sources.

Key features: Allows you to search intellectually selected resources and their bibliographic data, including those from the so-called ‘deep web’, which are ignored by commercial search engines. There are several options for sorting the results list and you can browse by Dewey Decimal Classification and document type.

Neil explains:

“BASE is bigger than CORE, but the discovery tools are not as advanced.”

Library catalogues

Copac

What is it? A Jisc service allowing you to look through the catalogues of over 70 major UK and Irish libraries.

Key features: Good for locating books and other material held in research collections in the UK; especially useful for humanities.

Rachel explains:

“It gets over 13 million searches a year from higher and further education, so it is a very well used service.”

Web Scale Discovery services

What is it? Many university libraries have one of these services working behind the scenes, they index a vast range of academic resources and provide sophisticated search tools.

Key features: The search includes journal articles, e-books, reviews, legal documents and more that are harvested from primary and secondary publishers, aggregators and open-access repositories.

Rachel comments:

“Many researchers might not even know their library has this tool – it just looks like the library catalogue to them – but is much more than that.”

Zetoc

What is it? One of the world’s most comprehensive research databases, this Jisc service gives you access to over 28,000 journals and more than 52 million article citations and conference papers through the British Library’s electronic table of contents.

Key features: Researchers can get email alerts of the table of contents in journals, keeping them up to date with the latest literature in their field.

Neil says:

“This is a very popular feature and is an easy way to search back to previous articles to support your research.”

Europeana

What is it? This is a meta-catalogue of cultural heritage collections from a range of Europe's leading galleries, libraries, archives and museums. The catalogue includes books and manuscripts, photos and paintings, television and film, sculpture and crafts, diaries and maps, sheet music and recordings.

Features: You can download your resource, print it, use it, save it, share it and play with it.

Neil tells us:

“This is hugely important for the humanities and some social sciences.”

Social web

Twitter

What is it? Harness the power of social discovery and particularly the #icanhazpdf hashtag for locating PDFs that you do not have access to through your institution.

Features: Tweet an article you need using this hashtag and someone will point you to a copy that you can access.

Reference management and discovery services

Mendeley and Zotero

What are they? They are both ways to share reference lists, citations, and even full papers in the case of Mendeley.

Key feature: Save, organise and store your references so that you can remain organised ready for the final write-up.

Source : https://www.jisc.ac.uk/blog/ten-search-engines-for-researchers-that-go-beyond-google-11-jul-2013

 

Categorized in Online Research

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