Facebook Graph Search – What’s It All About?

Yesterday Facebook unveiled its latest feature at a press event held at the company’s headquarters in Menlo Park, California. Mark Zuckerberg has described Graph Search as the site’s “third pillar”, after Timeline and News Feed. So what does Facebook Graph Search do?

In Zuckerberg‘s own words, “Graph Search is a completely new way for people to get information on Facebook.” In the first instance, there will be four categories that users can search across – people, places, photos and interests. The idea is to utilise the masses of data that is either publicly available or has been shared with consent between connected users. People can then search for anything from friends with particular interests to the best places to eat in a certain town or city.

One example used by Mark Zuckerberg is “I want to invite friends over for Game of Thrones, but who among my friends likes Games of Thrones? Graph Search tells me.” But this isn’t just reliant upon a friend ‘Liking’ the Game Of Thrones page, Graph Search pulls information from the data your friends are sharing with you – comments, updates, posts on friends’ Timelines – to see if they have mentioned Game Of Thrones.

But this is just the tip of the iceberg, with Zuckerberg admitting that “it will take years and years to map the whole index of the graph.” To see the new feature in action, visit the dedicated Facebook Graph Search page on the social network itself. The whole thing looks pretty impressive, and if you want to use it yourself as soon as possible, you can join the waiting list to get the Beta version as it gradually rolls out.

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