Google buys new search algorithm

April 10, 2006

Google has acquired a new, advanced text search algorithm invented by an Israeli studying at Sydney's University of New South Wales, it was revealed Sunday.

The algorithm, called Orion, offers a list of topics directly related to the original search and only reveals the sites with enough words reasonably linked to one another and relevant to the search, according to a report in the Israeli business magazine TheMarker.

Orion also rates the texts by quality of the site in which they appear, the report said.

The algorithm's inventor, Ori Alon, Google and the University of New South Wales all declined to comment, the magazine said. Google confirmed only that "Ori Alon works at Google's Mountain View, California offices," according to the report.

However, Alon told the magazine in an interview six months ago that the university had registered a patent on the algorithm, which Alon, a doctoral student in computer science, developed with his professors.

The university confirmed that Yahoo! and Microsoft had also conducted negotiations with its business-development company, and the report said sources believed the two companies were also vying for the algorithm.

Google officially opened an office in Israel earlier this year and soon after that announced the construction of a research-and-development center in Haifa and the launch of Google News in Hebrew.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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