Facebook revealed a new exciting feature for the social networking site's millions of users on Tuesday. CEO Mark Zuckerberg together with engineer Lars Rasmussen and Tom Stocky, director of product management, introduced the new search engine tool called "Graph Search" at a conference in Menlo Park, California.
Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that "Graph Search" will allow the 1 billion Facebook users browse detailed information from people, photographs, places and interests within the social networking site. However, only the contents shared with the users can be accessible due to privacy issues.
The unveiled feature is now being considered a challenge to the web site services already offered in Google, LinkedIn and Yelp. "This continues to pit Facebook against Google," Gartner analyst Michael Gartenberg stated.
Mark Zuckerberg further explained at the presentation that "Graph Search" will show photographs based on how interesting they are which is indicated on the number of comments and "likes" received. Moreover, the Facebook CEO assured that web users can modify searches as they input their friends' specific interests in music, restaurant or even their favorite dentist.
Facebook "Graph Search" results will be based on how near the searcher is to the other users on the web site depending on how often they interact with each other. "You need to be able to ask the query, like, who are my friends in San Francisco. Graph search is a really big product. It's going to take years and years to index the whole map of the graph and everything we have out there," Zuckerberg stated.
The Facebook team showed other abilities of the new search engine tool such as allowing recruiters find potential employees and users searching for dates. "Graph Search is designed to take a precise query and return to you the answer, not links to other places," Zuckerberg added.
Mark Zuckerberg emphasized that Facebook is not really venturing into the internet search engine which is Google's area of expertise. "This is just some really neat stuff. This is one of the coolest things we've done in a while. Graph Search is a completely new way for people to get information on Facebook," Zuckerberg said.
Partnership was unveiled as well at the conference. Facebook confirmed the joint venture with Microsoft's Bing search which will provide additional web answers if Graph Search fails to clearly answer the user's inquiries. "We'll start rolling it out very slowly. We're looking forward to getting into more people hands over coming weeks and months," Zuckerberg stated.