The Future of Search Engines

If you haven't heard of ChatGPT until now, I don't know what man cave you have been hiding in but get your head back in the game.

The Future of Search Engines

A new storm is brewing in the search engine space. Ever since the launch of ChatGPT on November 30th, 2022 things have not been the same. Honestly, I thought google would be at the forefront to weather the storm. I am disappointed. Despite google squandering billions on AI research they have never bothered re-inventing google search.

Maybe they have gotten sloppy, blinded by the billions they make every day. They treat google search like this fragile vase that doesn't require re-inventing. More ads they say. Is it me or by the time you get what you search for on google you have to go through like 5 ads stacked together masquerading as search results?

Hey Alex, you could use other search engines you know you might say. To that, I would respond "I wouldn't note a significant difference". Hear me out, alternative search engines are just google in different flavors some are privacy-focused, some are security-focused yada yada yada... No one has ever challenged how a search engine should look or respond. But now with ChatGPT, it has opened a list of endless possibilities and it has gotten us to question how a search engine should respond to queries.

Now let's not bash google too much... I mean, am probably writing this post while cross-referencing my facts from google. Google has been alright despite their challenges. Let's give them credit where it's due. Every other search engine dreams to be Google. However, as a civilization, we require more and nothing stays the same forever. If they want to continue making billions they'll have to do better.

Whats ChatGPT

If you haven't heard of ChatGPT until now, I don't know what man cave you have been hiding in but get your head back in the game.

ChatGPT is an optimized language model for dialogue that interacts in a conversational way that has the ability to follow up on questions, admit mistakes, challenge incorrect premises, and reject inappropriate requests.

Try ChatGPT

There is a reason the release of ChatGPT has gotten Google worried. It is something that could hurt their billions from google search. Let's stop to pretend it's about making search results safe and more relevant for us.

ChatGPT has gotten Google's top executives so worried that they have issued a "code red" to google employees. I think ChatGPT is just uncovering Google's sloppiness. Before you judge my statement let's not forget, OpenAI wasn't the first company to release a language model for dialogue like ChatGPT. On May 18th, 2021 during the Google I/O keynote, google unveiled their language model for dialogue nicknamed LAMDA.In 2022 they unveiled LAMDA2. However, Google LAMDA is not readily available like ChatGPT. To access LAMDA you have to sign in and wait until Google sends you an email that it's your turn. Aah!! Bureaucracy.

LAMDA screenshot

LAMDA is the same AI Blake Lemoine, a software engineer at google claimed to be sentient in early 2022. This obviously got him fired at google. Try LAMDA.

LAMDA and ChatGPT are both built using GPT-3.5 architecture, however, have different training methods. LAMDA is a supervised-learning model that is trained using large amounts of dialogue data, and the responses it produces are typically more human-generated than those of ChatGPT. On the other hand, ChatGPT is a pre-trained model that is fine-tuned on web documents and produces responses more closely resembling those from authoritative external sources.

One of the reasons Google is afraid of ChatGPT is, it could replace how people use search engines. Instead of extracting exact excerpts from a site and throwing you a list of site links when you search for something. ChatGPT has the power to decisively understand what you searched for, compute and generate the results for you in text. It's like it has a mind of its own.

Some of the things ChatGPT can accomplish include:

  • Tell it to write a simple code
  • Fix a bug in your code
  • Write a blog post
  • Marques Brownlee asked it to write a youtube transcript
  • Write a Poem

Try ChatGPT. Don't just take my word for it.

The list is endless but you get the point. To accomplish such tasks using google search you'd have to open different tabs and manually copy-paste. Don't get me started on Google Assistant, it's the worst. Google Assistant would just redirect you to a google search most of the time you ask it something. At this point am starting to doubt if Google Assistant qualifies to be called an AI or an automation tool.

On the other hand ChatGPT usually does the research for you and hands you the results on a silver plate, it is plainly amazing. A similar query to ChatGPT may yield different results when ran different times but I did note it all usually revolves around the same answer.

ChatGPT Screenshot

Implementation of ChatGPT-like features to Search Engines is already being implemented - Perplexity AI

Perplexity AI uses the OpenAI API language model to answer questions. Even though this is not the same as ChatGPT it does accomplish tasks better than google search. Perplexity AI is in its beta stages and it's not a commercial product yet however it does demonstrate the future of search engines. Try Perplexity Ask.

Perplexity Screenshot


For those who a skeptical about the adoption of ChatGPT like AI model to search engines due to how much computation power is required to process a single query and the accuracy levels. My remarks are simple, when Steve Jobs unveiled the first iPhone people had concerns that the iPhone had a shorter battery life compared to the other phones then, it also overheated and it would not work. Steve Bullmer the then CEO of Microsoft went ahead to laugh at the iPhone stating " $500 fully subsidized it will never work because it doesn't have a physical keyboard which doesn't make it a good email machine ". Steve Jobs's iPhone's revolutionized the mobile industry.
Why did people still continue to buy the iPhones despite the concerns you might ask? It was because of the functionalities the iPhone provided.

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