Bing announced, on its Community Blog today, a new enhancement to their search results called “Editors’ Picks”. The service is “designed to enhance Bing results by bringing editorially selected sites to your search”. The goal is to make your search experience faster so that you can be more productive. According to their blog post, “Editors’ Picks are small collections of relevant sites that our online editorial experts think will be useful to you, but may not always make it to the top of the search results page.”
They don’t reveal too much about how they go about picking content to show in the Editors’ Picks search results. One example they use in their blog post is when they see interest in seasonal topics, like Thanksgiving recipes and crafts, so they put together a collection of sites based on that topic. This says to me that they must be sifting through popular search queries and compiling information based on those trends.
Getting Editors’ Picks is pretty simple. You basically start a Bing search and if there are any relevant Editors’ Picks for that subject, a tab will appear at the top of your search results labeled “Editors’ Picks”. They have also cheated a little off of Google’s Guesses and have added “Instant Answers” below some search results. You can visit Bing.com/editorspicks to find the full list of topics for which they have prepared Editors’ Picks at this time.
This is an interesting move on Bing’s part. I think that it is good to be able to find content based on what a human has picked out. However, isn’t this kind of what Yahoo started out as when it was trying to index the web? I am sure there are some differences but that was the first thing that came to my mind when I read their blog post. I am also curious about how they will be able to overcome a lot of the biases that are out there. For instance, I personally take issue with their stating that they are offering a look at sites that aren’t always at the top search lists, when I look at their “Must Read Tech Blogs” section and it lists the same old blogs that always get attention. Hey Bing, why not show Techie Buzz some love?!? ;) OK, I will get off my soap box now. The thing I am most interested in is if the hand-picked results can show me a side of the web that I otherwise would not have been able to find using algorithm based searches. I honestly hope that it can.