A few years ago when Microsoft rebranded Live Search to Bing, it promised to move beyond the “10 blue lines” that described Google search at the time. In the years since that, search has indeed moved well beyond those 10 blue lines, first with the introduction of Siri and Google Now, followed closely behind by Cortana, all providing voice recognition and natural language searches, connection with mobile device elements like calendars and contact lists, and a more “conversational” approach to search.
Bing, too, is moving toward a more conversational approach to search, and in a blog post today on the Bing Search blog, introduces the ability for Bing to understand your context in a continuous conversation about a particular topic:
Today we’re taking it a step further. Now, not only will give you the answer directly in the search results, but we will also continue the conversation. For instance, you can ask “who is the president of the united states”, we will show you the answer. From there you might ask, “who is his wife” or “how tall is he.” Bing maintains the context and keeps the conversation moving forward.
These conversations build upon Bing’s “entities”, a collection of people, places, and things that drive not only these conversations but Bing’s Sidebar and Snapshots features, showing snippets of information about entities and now exposing the connections between them.
Microsoft continues to move toward a more “Cortana” –like experience for Bing everywhere, as those lines are blurred, too. Are you using Cortana? Do you find your search experiences changing? What do you wish you could ask Bing?