Microsoft grows in searching

Microsoft as a search company on the way of committed searching? News from business world report that the Redmond software house has bought Medstory, a health-related search engine. But what’s going on? ZDNet states the main purpose of Microsoft in this acquisition is to make research on intelligent searching

Medstory, which is based in Foster City, Calif., operates a search engine–currently in beta–that is geared toward the needs of consumers and health professionals who are looking for information on medical topics. Search results are divided into categories of information relevant to the query: for example, results can be narrowed into clinical studies, procedures, personal health information, conditions and substances.”

Microsoft press release underlines the commitment to let the people take decisions on health and medical topics being well-informed and having the most accurate informations on that. It’s a kind of an awareness creation by means of such an intelligent searching that selects, gathers and organizes web resources, bringing together faceting, clustering and ranking (oh, and obviously feeds). From the press release:

“According to an October 2006 study by the Pew Internet & American Life Project, million people in the United States go online for health information every day, and 53 percent of health-seekers said a recent search had an impact on how they take care of themselves or someone else. Yet 22 percent of respondents said they felt frustrated by a lack of information or an inability to find what they were looking for.

Unlike results from most search engines, Medstory’s results are based on intuitive search technology, which provides prequalified information to consumers and health professionals conducting health-related research. This unique approach provides users with intelligent guides to help refine and better target their searches. Users receive organized content that is more relevant to their search criteria and that enables better health-related decisions.”

I’m going to be a bit feared reading John Battelle’s The search and thinking about the power of search engines – perhaps awesome power in this case…

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