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The new Google suggest feature

Google Labs have just released the beta version of a new Google tool: Google Suggest. As you type into the search box, Google Suggest guesses what you're typing and offers suggestions in real time:

Google Suggest

How does it work?

"Our algorithms use a wide range of information to predict the queries users are most likely to want to see. For example, Google Suggest uses data about the overall popularity of various searches to help rank the refinements it offers."

Google Suggest is based on a JavaScript library. When you type a letter, Google Suggest requests a special modified version of Google's search tool which only returns the necessary data.

Google Suggest disables your web browsers auto-complete feature and it defines a field for the new auto-complete popup menu. Each time you enter a character in the search field, Google Suggest fills that field with the results of a query to a special database.

What can it do for you?

By suggesting more refined searches up front, Google Suggest can make your searches more convenient and efficient by keeping you from having to reformulate your query.

The downside is that Google Suggest limits the number of suggestions. If the current version of Google suggest became an official Google feature, the number of different search queries would be reduced. People wouldn't enter their own keyword creations anymore but they would use Google's limited suggestions.

Interested in some funny results?

Google Suggest sometimes returns interesting suggestions. For example, enter "my boyfriend is", "my girlfriend is" or "the truth is". It's fun to try new words and see what Google will do with them.

By typing single letters in the search box you can see the Google ABC: A is for Amazon, Z is for zip codes.

More information about Google Suggest can be found here. If you're interested in getting top rankings in Google and other major search engines, you might want to take a look at IBP.

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December 2004 search engine articles