Google announced they have acquired Metaweb. Metaweb is a search company that figures out entities and not just words. I have a video from the company explaining exactly what that means.
In short, Google seems to want to explore and leverage Metaweb’s technology to bolster their rich snippet initiative and Google Squared project. As you now know, Google Squared powers Google’s quick answers. Google said this acquisition will help them “improve search and make the web richer and more meaningful for everyone.”
Here is how Google explains future improvements due to Metaweb:
Type [barack obama birthday] in the search box and see the answer right at the top of the page. Or search for [events in San Jose] and see a list of specific events and dates. We can offer this kind of experience because we understand facts about real people and real events out in the world. But what about [colleges on the west coast with tuition under $30,000] or [actors over 40 who have won at least one oscar]? These are hard questions, and we’ve acquired Metaweb because we believe working together we’ll be able to provide better answers.
To me, this seems like an automated and scalable version of Wolfram Alpha.
Here is a brief video explaining Metaweb.