Microsoft Says Decaffeinated Bing Tastes as Good as Google | Wired Enterprise | Wired.com.

Is Bing as good as Google?

According to Harry Shum who has spent eleven years with Microsoft on Research and Development in search technology, Bing is now on par with Google.  Wired’s article is an interesting read and after using Bing on and off for the past six months or so, I would say it’s getting close.

The strength of Google is in it’s amazingly fast indexing capabilities:

In 2010, Google gave its search engine a jolt, moving the web’s de facto gateway onto a new software platform dubbed “Caffeine.” Designed by Google itself, Caffeine was a way for the company to more rapidly add new links to its massive index of websites, including news stories and blog posts and chatter from web forums. According to the company, it provided “50 percent fresher” search results than its previous indexing system, which was based on a seminal Google creation called MapReduce.

Google’s search engine came to dominate the web in part because the company built software that could quickly index links using tens of thousands of ordinary servers. MapReduce was so successful, it spawned an open source copycat — Hadoop — that now underpins everything from Facebook and Twitter to eBay and LinkedIn, and Caffeine was the next step, an effort to accommodate the world’s insatiable appetite for immediate web updates.

Social Integration

One area where Bing does appear to have an edge for the time being is in social integration. Bing has been tightly integrated with both Faceboook and Twitter, the undisputed titans of social media, for some time now. There is no love lost between these companies and Google. Google figures they can just build a product and do social media better, a la Google+, but that is a whole different discussion. Bing on the other hand is trying to create synergy between search and social media to further it’s position in the marketplace. Will it work?

The Jury is still out

I would guess most internet users are not quite ready to jump on the Bing is as good as Google bandwagon just yet. It is nice that Bing is around. It provides competition, and competition is good for the consumer. It gives users a choice, and it keeps the internet giants on their toes. Technology never stops moving and in the search space, this competition will be worth keeping an eye on.