Thursday, September 9, 2010

Google Doodle mystery explained as new 'Instant' search results unveiled

Goggle has today announced new 'Instant' search results, introduced for users around the world.

Google searches will now predict what users are looking for from the very first letter they type.

Google's homepage will then switch instantly to a drop-down menu of results that continually updates as the user adds more letters to their search term.

Instant: Google searches will now predict what users are looking for from the very first letter typed

New feature: Google Vice President of Search Product and User Experience Marissa Mayer speaks during the launch of Google Instant

A post on the official Google Blog on Wednesday declared: 'Instant takes what you have typed already, predicts the most likely completion and streams results in real-time for those predictions - yielding a smarter and faster search that is interactive, predictive and powerful.

'The user benefits of Google Instant are many — but the primary one is time saved. Our testing has shown that Google Instant saves the average searcher two to five seconds per search.

'That may not seem like a lot at first, but it adds up. With Google Instant, we estimate that we'll save our users 11 hours with each passing second!'

Earlier, there had been numerous suggestions over what the new interactive Google homepage, used for the past two days, meant.

On Wednesday the homepage showed the Google logo in pale grey, with no sign of the interactive balloons which appeared without explanation yesterday.

However when a word was typed into the search engine the letters that make up the word Google one by one reverted to their classic colours.

Tuesday's 'Google Doodle' was a collection of coloured balls that moved away when you tried to pass your mouse over them.

Then, if left undisturbed, they 'settled' and reformed the Google logo.

Google regularly updates the way the way its name is displayed on the homepage to reflect historic dates, famous birthdays and other world events.

Normally, when a user clicks on the Doodle, the reason for the design is displayed as if you'd done a Google search for it.

Faster: Google predicts the new instant searches will save users valuable time

But unlike most Google Doodles, this week's balloon design did not appear to be referring to anything in particular - sparking wild speculation on the internet.

Some commentators correctly predicted the design was a teaser for a big announcement that Google was due to make.

Others pointed out that the design's release almost coincides with what would be Google's 12th birthday.

And others said it was simply an exercise in HTML5 - the latest version of the standard programming code for displaying content on the web.

Google's homepage yesterday was initially grey but gradually recaptured its colour

The Google logo begins to refill in its original colours as you type into the search box

Tuesday's Google Doodle was an interactive balloon design that did not appear to refer to anything in particular


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