I did discuss in a blog earlier this year the Wolfram Alpha search engine. For a few months it stole the thunder from Google to a point that Google started to take countermeasures by providing similar search capabilities (but not quite as good). In those months Alpha managed to attract as many as 1.5 million searches a day, an insignificant fraction of the ones managed by Google but still… Well, those numbers have declined: Alpha had over 1.5m unique visitors in May but only 260,000 in October.
Wolfram did not stay still but moved to the next step (beyond linking up with Microsoft’ search engine Bing. In October Wolfram released a set of API, Application Programming Interfaces, allowing anybody to create software and website exploiting Alpha’s abilities. According to Wolfram:
“Alpha is a technology platform that allows one to inject computable knowledge into any application or computer system,”
Additionally, Alpha has been designed in such a way that it learns from the questions it receives and can improve its capability in answering them. The claim is that if it does not find an answer on the web it will try to create one itself (we can see part of this ability when asking information that actually results from a processing of data that can be found on different places and need to be computed to derive a valuable information.
It may get interesting. I can imagine Alpha failing to find an answer and calling in other participants in its ecosystems to solicit their help. Is a search based ecosystem going to succeed in the future?
Could this open the way to an active participation of Telecom Operators that, knowing the customer profile can interpret his question better?