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Last week, Facebook beefed up one of its pending patents that has to do with the way that it catalogs users’ posts. The original patent, first filed back in April of this year, concerns the “Real Time Content Searching In Social Network.” The new additions to this patent explain how the social media giant plans to implement new technology for indexing and retrieving users’ Facebook posts.
The updated patent describes how the new process will allow Facebook to tag user’s posts by using term indexes and “user term partitions” in order to group together posts by different people. More specifically, the new search technology will extract three pieces of data from each user post: a user identifier, a post identifier, and a post. Facebook will then sort these posts using these identifying markers and store them in a database. The database, in turn, will be searchable in real-time by other users, providing users with more current and relevant results, based on what other people are talking about and posting.
This is not the first time that Facebook has attempted to ramp up its searching capability. Several times before in the social media site’s nine year long history, there have been big overhauls of the search function. This most recent advent, however, seems to be more technologically advanced and well thought out than ever, as it actually identifies different users’ connections based on their individual profiles at the time of the search. This will enable the search results to be filtered in various ways, so that, for example, it will show only results related to one specific connection.
This more efficient means of filtering and presenting search results will not only make it more streamlined for Facebook users, but will allow Facebook itself to learn even more about its more than 1 billion social networkers. There is also word that the company might be able to use the more smartly filtered posts to better target its advertising. This, coupled with the recent talk of Facebook’s development of new technology that would use artificial intelligence to mimic brain cells in processing data, could mean the start of an unprecedented level of Facebook search technology.
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(Intellectual Property News.com)
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