‘Star Trek’ computer inspires future of Google search

Google's Amit Singhal says Star Trek is required watching for those interested in the future of search.

(Credit: Image by Josh Long/CNET; credits: Google, Thinkgeek.com)

AUSTIN, Texas–At Google, the future of search looks an awful lot like something out of one of the iconic science-fiction franchises of the past.

At least that’s the impression given by Google’s Amit Singhal when he was interviewed on stage by Guy Kawasaki at South By Southwest Interactive in Austin recently.

No matter how much Kawasaki prodded Singhal for insights into the inner workings of Google’s algorithms, the senior vice president of search seemed far more interested in talking about his apparent obsession with the computer from “Star Trek.”

“For those of you who have never watched an episode of ‘Star Trek,’ please go do that,” Singhal implored the audience at one point.

For the purposes of enlightening the presumably rare Crave reader who is in that group of Trek virgins, the computer on board the USS Enterprise has some very advanced natural language algorithms. It is able to understand and respond to requests in a conversational manner; it also provides important information to the crew unp… [Read more]

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