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Google: This is how we improve search and maps with AI

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Coming soon news for text search, image search, Google Maps and Google Translate. We talked to two Big G executives about it

A more intuitive and natural search, a simpler and less stressful street navigation, a translation function that is more faithful to the context. This is what Google is proposing with the changes just announced to its search and navigation systems (Google Maps) and translation systems (Google Translate).

Here comes the multiple search

Artificial intelligence, they explain from Google, has increasingly helped with language processing, making the results more and more useful over the years. However, with the increase in technologies and investments, Google has improved its search functionality over time and today announces that it can now understand information in the most diverse forms, from natural language to images and videos, and understand the world better and better. Real. The first novelty is the update of Lens – the Google software that allows you to search the Internet from a photo taken with your smartphone. Thanks to the Search Your Screen function (initially present on Android systems) it will be possible to search for what is visible in a photo, in a video on the web, in an app (such as Instagram or Whatsapp for example) without to exit the specific app. Not only that: thanks to the multiple search function, you can search for information from an image and a text together. A type of search currently available around the world through Google Lens.

“With the multiple search – explains Lucia Terrenghi, UX Director at Google – we can also start from an image and then use the text to refine our query. To give an example, if I see a plant I like, but I don’t know the name and I want to know if I can take care of it in my apartment, I can use this feature to ask Google if I that really can keep it in my house. Or if I see a friend who has a jacket I like but would like it in red, I can use the multiple search to see if it’s available in other colors. Even though we very often communicate with Google via text – continues Terrenghi – in reality we have invested years in understanding semantic value, i.e. what is semantically represented in an image or video”. Other new features include the ability to ” near us” (for example, if we are looking for a dress and want to buy it from a store in our city), a feature that is currently rolling out in the United States and will be available worldwide in the coming months.

How is Google Maps changing

Not just Google Search: Google Maps is also being updated, aiming to provide “engaging and intuitive” maps that can envision a new way of exploring and navigating, as Google Vice President and General Manager Geo Chris Phillips explains: “The future of Google Maps is increasingly immersive and sustainable: we use improvements in artificial intelligence and augmented reality to navigate our maps in ever more detailed and sustainable ways, improve cycling or walking directions, or give directions in the most ecological way to go”. One of the innovations announced this year is immersive visualization: it allows you to explore a place as if you were there yourself. They explain that by leveraging advances in artificial intelligence and computer vision, immersive visualization, billions of Street View images and aerial images are merged to create an extremely rich and accurate digital model of the world, where information such as weather, traffic and crowds are superimposed. The feature will arrive in Italy in the coming months in the cities of Florence and Venice. Among the novelties, also the search with Live View: it allows you to use artificial intelligence to search around us for places, services, roads, bus stops: just position the smartphone vertically and frame the area to find more quickly what we are looking for. Live View also works indoors, for example to help tourists navigate major stations, airports, shopping malls: some of the most important cities in the world are currently mapped, but none in Italy. Google Maps will also be updated for the new way of electric travel: on electric vehicles equipped with integrated Google Maps, it will be possible to get suggestions on the best place to stop to charge, and it will be easier to find charging stations (and also the ones with the fastest top-ups).

What’s new in Google Translate

Finally, news for Google Translate, the service that allows you to translate texts (even those on photos) or audio on the fly: thanks to artificial intelligence, Google promises translations that are more faithful to the context. In addition, many new languages ​​have been added to Translate, including Basque, Corsican, Hawaiian, Kurdish, Latin, Luxembourgish, Sudanese, Yiddish, and Zulu.

Source: TG 24 Sky

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