This morning, Facebook gathered a handful of press at its Menlo Park campus to announce a big and mysterious product update.
“We’re taking a tip back to our roots,” said CEO Mark Zuckerberg, which he said revolved around “using the social graph to make new connections.”
In addition to news feed and Timeline, Zuck continued to say that the third pillar of Facebook’s network is graph search.
The graph we’re talking about includes a billion people, 240 billion photos, and 1 trillion connections — all indexed for public search that’s also privacy-aware. All of which, Zuck said, is a huge engineering task.
“About 10 percent of our computing is spent on privacy checks,” said Zuckerberg. “This is infrastructure we’ve been building up over years.”
He continued to emphasize that Facebook’s graph search is going to be quite different from Google or Bing web search. “In general, web search is designed to … return links that may have answers to the questions that you’re trying to ask. Graph search is designed to return the answer, not links that might get you to the answer.”
In anticipation of the news, which was hinted at in an invitation a few days ago, investors are growing more optimistic on the company. Facebook stock has risen to its highest price in months and is trading at $31.43 as of this writing.
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