Google is adding a significant new feature to its search engine that will provide users with information about the websites pulled up when they search for something. This will help users “make a more informed decision about the sites you may want to visit”, according to Google on its official blog.
Google will use Wikipedia to provide descriptions and details of websites, depending on its “open editing model” which relies on thousands of volunteers contributing to the site’s database, and believes that this will ensure accuracy and quality. The intention is to give users “peace of mind” when searching, particularly when coming across sites they’ve never seen before. This can also assist users to recognise misinformation in their search results, in a similar way to Twitter’s Birdwatch project.
“About this result” will also provide additional information, like whether a result is an ad or not, or if the site has a secure HTTPS connection. You can quickly check your privacy settings through the new menu too.
The feature arrives in beta form in the US today. Users will be able to provide feedback on their experience with it, which will guide Google in improving the feature before making it available to everyone.
This looks to be an especially useful tool, particularly when we collectively spend so much time looking for updates on COVID-19 online now, and it’s a welcome addition to Google search. It’s a shame that while its search engine enjoys a new update, Google’s internal game development studios are shutting down.
(Source: The Verge)