New Search Engine Wolfram Alpha "Could Be As Important As Google"

dell takes a slice at apple with super thin latitude z dellz closed

Launching a new search engine these days is a dangerous venture. Saying it “could be as important as Google” is a major claim for something that hasn’t even debuted yet.

But British scientist Stephen Wolfram is saying that about his search engine, Wolfram Alpha, which is set to be rolled out in two months. On the Wolfram Research site he wrote:

"Fifty years ago, when computers were young, people assumed that they’d quickly be able to handle all these kinds of things … and that one would be able to ask a computer any factual question and have it compute the answer."

"But it didn’t work out that way … I’d always thought, though, that eventually it should be possible. And a few years ago, I realized that I was finally in a position to try and do it."

Wolfram claims that his search engine can understand the questions asked and answer them based on natural language processing.

"The way humans normally communicate is through natural language – and when one’s dealing with the whole spectrum of knowledge, I think that’s the only realistic option for communicating with computers too."

"Of course, getting computers to deal with natural language has turned out to be incredibly difficult. And, for example, we’re still very far away from having computers systematically understand large volumes of natural language text on the web."

Currently search engines compare the query against the billions of sites on the Web.

The proof of the pudding is in the eating, of course, but Wolfram has impressive form – he created the widely-used program Mathematica.

Computing

With Q#, Microsoft is throwing programmers the keys to quantum

Quantum computers aren’t yet practical, but Microsoft has already developed a programming language for them. Q# works inside Visual Studio, just like most other languages, and could offer a gateway into the weird world of quantum physics.
Smart Home

The best stud finders of 2018

Endlessly searching for a stud in your wall can be a chore. Fortunately, these seven stud finders are both high-tech and straightforward, meaning you can drill, nail, and hang with the utmost confidence.
Movies & TV

Netflix testing ads in between some subscribers’ binge-watching sessions

Netflix is testing out a new feature that has some users upset. The streaming service has started playing advertisements between shows. Netflix says that its goal is to help users spend less time searching for something new to watch.
Web

Google claims censored search in China is ‘not close’ as employees protest

Google CEO, Sundar Pinchai, has promised employees that the company is "not close" to releasing a censored search product in China, despite claims that it was working on such a project.
Emerging Tech

Regular Wi-Fi can accurately detect bombs, chemicals, and weapons in bags

Surveillance cameras and bag searches have become commonplace when it comes to security in public venues. But researchers may have found a different way to detect suspicious items: regular Wi-Fi.
Product Review

Recent production woes make the Eve V a worse buy than it once was

Our Eve V review looks at a crowdsourced detachable tablet that checks some boxes for its backers. Its delay in making it to the market holds it back in some areas, and Eve Technology is an unknown quantity.
Computing

Art-inspired face blurring can obscure identity without losing humanity

Researchers have developed an AI-generated anonymity system that “paints” over video frames, using inspiration from masters like Picasso and Van Gogh to reimagine a person’s appearance. The goal is to minimize outer resemblance but…
Computing

Here's how to convert an MP4 to an MP3 file with online and offline tools

Sometimes you just want the audio without the video. In this guide, we'll show you how to convert an MP4 to an MP3 using web-based software and dedicated programs for both Windows and MacOS.
Computing

Crypto-intrigued? Here's how to buy Bitcoin for the first time

Is it time to purchase your first Bitcoin investment? If you're ready to get involved in the cryptocurrency, we'll walk you through how to pick an exchange, how to choose the right wallet, and how to buy Bitcoin the safe way!
Product Review

Dell's classic 4K P2715Q monitor still holds up today

The Dell P2715Q might not be the most modern of 4K displays, but its IPS panel, extensive connectivity, and easily adjusted stand make it more than competitive with the newest crop of screens.
Computing

Style up your MacBook Air with one of these great cases or sleeves

Whether you’re looking for added protection or a stylish flourish, you’re in the right place for the best MacBook Air cases. We have form-hugging cases, luxurious covers and padded sleeves priced from $7 to $130. Happy shopping!
Cars

Nvidia ‘more than happy to help’ if Tesla’s self-driving chip doesn’t pan out

After Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced the intention to use an in-house Autopilot chip, Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang responded to an analyst's question, saying that if the Tesla chip doesn't work out, he'd be more than happy to help.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: inflatable backpacks and robotic submarines

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the Web this week. You can't buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Product Review

Dell's XPS 15 is the PC every laptop wishes it could be

Not everyone needs the power that a laptop like the Dell XPS 15 provides. But if you need a computer that can handle the heavy workload you use every day, the XPS 15 might be the best you can buy.