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Wolfram Alpha

George R [PersonRank 10]

Monday, March 9, 2009
15 years ago3,045 views

Wolfram Alpha is designed to answer factual questions directly rather than provide links to query matches. Alpha is scheduled to be released in May 2009. Now it has limited availability. I guess this means that right now Alpha is pre-beta. :)

Nova Spivack made detailed submission about this at Twine, which is the basis of an article at TechCrunch.

TechCrunch: http://www.techcrunch.com/2009/03/08/wolfram-alpha-computes-answers-to-factual-questions-this-is-going-to-be-big/

Alpha: http://www.wolframalpha.com/

George R [PersonRank 10]

15 years ago #

Below are a few quotes from Spivack's TechCrunch story.

"Wolfram Alpha is a system for computing the answers to questions. To accomplish this it uses built-in models of fields of knowledge, complete with data and algorithms, that represent real-world knowledge."

...

"Based on this you can ask it scientific questions and it can compute the answers for you. Even if it has not been programmed explicity to answer each question you might ask it."

"But science is just one of the domains it knows about — it also knows about technology, geography, weather, cooking, business, travel, people, music, and more."

...

"Where Google is a system for FINDING things that we as a civilization collectively publish, Wolfram Alpha is for ANSWERING questions about what we as a civilization collectively know."

Stephen Wolfram also has a blog that discusses this.
http://blog.wolfram.com/2009/03/05/wolframalpha-is-coming/

Moses [PersonRank 0]

15 years ago #

Wolfram Mathematica is a fantastic software, hope their new venture success.

Juha-Matti Laurio [PersonRank 10]

15 years ago #

'Wolfram Alpha...Brilliant tool, Google killer, or lots of hype?':
http://education.zdnet.com/?p=2231

Ianf [PersonRank 10]

15 years ago #

Whatever its future, surely "Wolfram Alpha" is just a placeholder name for the real thing, when it is ready, which will have to be something short, and verb-y, ie. usable as a verb. "I wolfram-alphaed it" or even just "wolframed" simply doesn't cut it!

Ianf [PersonRank 10]

15 years ago #

One way to read the quote below is that, when faced with a compound question on the level of
http://google.com/search?q=traveling+salesman%27s+dilemma
"Wolfram Alpha" will first "ask back" a number of questions to narrow down the scope and granularity of the expected answer. If so, we're in for a marriage of "Eliza" to AI Turk ;-))

» [...] According to Nova Spivack, the founder of another intelligent web service, Twine, Alpha is far more impressive than what has gone before.

"Wolfram Alpha is like plugging into a vast electronic brain," he wrote. "It provides extremely impressive and thorough questions asked in many different ways, and it computes answers it doesn't merely look them up in a big database." [...] «
http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/2009/mar/09/search-engine-google

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