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Google Search can now answer a variety of much more complex questions

Google Personal Search

Recent updates to Google Search allow it to better understand complex queries and provide more accurate answers, meaning users can now Google questions involving superlatives, order, complex combinations, and get answers from a specific time period. This update comes thanks to Google being better able to understand the intent and different pieces of a question.

“We can now break down a query to understand the semantics of each piece,” Google says.

For example, users can now search for an answer that was true during a particular point in time. A question like “What was the Royals roster in 2013?” would find the Kansas City Royals lineup from a previous season and not the current one.

When asking a question, Google can also list results in order from ascending or descending order. Searching “What are the largest cities in Iowa by area?” shows the answers ranked by square miles from largest to smallest in a side scroll on the top of the results page.

What are the largest cities in Iowa by area? - Google Search 2015-11-16 14-01-39

The last new ability Search has gained involves answering questions with complex combinations — ones where there are effectively two things being asked. “What was the U.S. population when Bernie Sanders was born?” involves Google first finding out what year Sanders was born and then searching for the population of that year.

The Knowledge Graph was launched in 2012 to better understand concepts and the relationship between things. The feature made it possible for Google to list and even speak out answers without needing to go into one of the traditional 10 blue links. You should see these changes on the web and in the Google app today.

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