The mysterious announcement that Facebook promised to make is a mystery no more. During a live media event at the Facebook headquarters in Menlo Park, CA, Mark Zuckerberg introduced the beta version of what they are calling Graph Search.
Over the years Facebook has accumulated 1 billion users, 240 billion photos, and 1 trillion connections. The meaningful connections users made on the network in the beginning have become more and more difficult to see as the network has grown. Graph Search is the first step to navigating all the the people and activity on Facebook in order to find new or reestablish existing connections.
Unlike a web search, this isn’t about key words. The search is based on phrases that have to do with the Facebook users around you. For example, instead of searching for Hip-hop as you would in Google, you would search for friends in New York who like JayZ. In other words, Graph Search is about the shared experience and less about the stuff.
Right now Graph Search is still in development and is only available in English. The types of searchable content are also limited. Posts and Open Graph activity are currently not available in this first version of Graph Search.
According to the official Facebook Blog Post:
The first version of Graph Search focuses on four main areas — people, photos, places, and interests.
People: “friends who live in my city,” “people from my hometown who like hiking,” “friends of friends who have been to Yosemite National Park,” “software engineers who live in San Francisco and like skiing,” “people who like things I like,” “people who like tennis and live nearby”
Photos: “photos I like,” “photos of my family,” “photos of my friends before 1999,” “photos of my friends taken in New York,” “photos of the Eiffel Tower”
Places: “restaurants in San Francisco,” “cities visited by my family,” “Indian restaurants liked by my friends from India,” “tourist attractions in Italy visited by my friends,” “restaurants in New York liked by chefs,” “countries my friends have visited”
Interests: “music my friends like,” “movies liked by people who like movies I like,” “languages my friends speak,” “strategy games played by friends of my friends,” “movies liked by people who are film directors,” “books read by CEOs”
For now, interested Facebook users are encouraged to visit www.facebook.com/graphsearch to learn more and get on the waitlist.