What is Facebook Graph Search Engine All About?

Facebook has announced a new way of searching on social network, especially designed to quickly find something shared with you by your friends. Its name is Graph Search and going by the demonstration, it looks awesome!

It lets you easily find people, discover places and interests and explore photos which was tough otherwise. Like, if I want to find “Restaurants I have been to” or “Photos of me at Shimla”. Just type in those phrases and results will be displayed directly.

Not just me but it can be expanded to my friends too. Like, type in “Friends from Delhi” or “Friends who like A. R. Rehman”. Yes, there is a way to access those things manually but Graph search will make it more easy without involving clicks and visit to several pages.

facebook graph search example

Comparing with Google or any Web Search

Facebook has taken more humanistic approach while designing Graph Search. Results that come up in Search for a given topic or keyword are direct answers instead of links. I made that statement just to make a clear difference between a web Search engines like Bing and Google who offer Links as result.

Also, the way of searching is more of like asking a question to a person and not computer/machine. If you want to find people who like Nature photography, you will have to type exactly the same phrase- “friends who like nature photography” and search will include profiles you are looking for.

On other hand, if you type “Nature Photography” in Google, answers will be somewhat technical like “what is nature photography”, “How it is done” and so on.

Zuckerberg explained that Facebook is based on three pillars (at least that is his idea to complete their social platform). The first of these is the Newsfeed which gives minute by minute update in our “Walls”, the second is the Timeline, you can count on our life and experiences with a chronological order and thus make more sense. And third pillar he called- Graph Search, which arises due to the need for simple and effective searches of the social network after their users grew to the point of overcoming billion number.

But makers of Facebook are very clear that the privacy of users must be a priority in any new release. Although, Graph Search searches within these 240 billion photos and billions of users and the content they’ve shared, this engine follows three basic rules before displaying the results:

  • Each content type has its own audience, not everyone is interested in the content they share.
  • Most content is not public.
  • We can only search in content that has been shared with us.

Especially, the last rule makes clear to us that this is to facilitate social search among our contacts and pages of our interest, we can not use Graph Search to search other users’ private content simply because nothing appears in the results.

Where It may Fail?

Unlike the demonstration, your friends may not share each and everything about them on Facebook. I will just take few examples: Even if they have visited certain place, they won’t check in those places or even if they have found watching some TV show interesting recently, they never liked that page.

So, you will never get more information on topic you are looking for if you will never get to know those friends.

In short, it all depends on “what kind of” and “how many” your friends are.

One thing is sure that Mr. Zuckerberg knows how to use the gold mine of our data they have. 🙂

At the moment, it is only available in US but you can join the waiting list to try out new Graph Search on Facebook by going on this link: www.facebook.com/about/graphsearch

Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 1 comments
rakesh - January 17, 2013

I have tried this search graph but all the time it doesn’t give good results.


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