Google Playing Doctor

Google never ceases to amaze me and I am not surprised to hear that more and more people turn somehow against this online enterprise. Instead of doing what they do best – search – Google endeavors on territories which don’t even come close to its area of expertise. In a world of money talks and everyone can be everything on the Web, how much will you trust a Google HEALTH program?

This theoretic question has a less theoretic answer: you’ll trust it and for good reasons. If you read the names involved in this project (posted on the Official Google Blog) you’ll note that they are all authorities in the domain. What Google is doing is quite simple to translate – all these professionals will scrutinize the search results and help Google refine search in the health sector.

The news about “Google Health” is not recent, but the program is due in the early 2008. Any day now, as they say.

But what you don’t know about Google – and apparently many users still live with the belief that the Google search results in general are based on powerful algorithms with no human interference whatsoever – is that Google depends on volunteer contributors to refine search.

“If you are deemed a quality contributor, your annotations will begin appearing in the search results of all Google users.”

– Google notes on the corresponding Health page in Google Co-ops.

It’s 2008 and the battle is given on the search field. Search engines like hakia, search wikia, Powerset, and even Mahalo try to add human intelligence to their results. Google has been doing this behind the scenes since a long time already. Can the above mentioned startups still take over? Are there still chances? I think there are! Be prepared.


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