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Glasgow comes up with new Internet search engine

by on11 June 2012

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Computer scientists at the University of Glasgow are developing a search engine which will draw its results from physical world sensors.The European-funded project, known as SMART, for ‘Search engine for MultimediA Environment geneRated contenT’, aims to develop a system to allow internet users to search and analyze data from these sensors.

By matching search queries with information from sensors and cross-referencing data from social networks such as Twitter, users will be able to receive detailed responses to questions such as ‘What part of the city hosts live music events which my friends have been to recently?’ or ‘How busy is the city centre?’ Currently, standard search engines such as Google are not able to answer search queries of this type.

Dr. Ladh Ounis, of the University of Glasgow’s School of Computing Science, said that the  SMART project will be built upon an open-source search engine technology known as Terrier. “The SMART engine will be able to answer high-level queries by automatically identifying cameras, microphones and other sensors that can contribute to the query, then synthesizing results stemming from distributed sources in an intelligent way.

The SMART project is a joint research initiative of nine partners including Atos, Athens Information Technology, IBM’s Haifa Research Lab, Imperial College London, City of Santander, PRISA Digital, Telesto and Consorzio S3 Log. It is expected to be tested in a real city by 2014.

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