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By 7 August 2013 | Categories: news

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Google has unveiled a new feature to its search, which caters to those seeking broader perspective and deeper understanding on a topic. The feature, aptly called ‘In-depth Articles’ offers up a new block of search results within Google’s main search results dedicated just to longer form articles pertaining to the search term.

On its blog, the company explained to understand a broad topic, sometimes just a quick answer isn’t sufficient.

“Our research indicates perhaps 10% of people’s daily information needs fit this category - topics like stem cell research, happiness, and love, to name just a few,” it elaborated.

Look a little deeper

The company gives the example of doing a search for censorship, in itself a weighty and complex issue. With the new feature, searchers would receive results that direct them to a thought-provoking article by Salman Rushdie in The New Yorker, an article  by Eric Schmidt and Jared Cohen in the Guardian about the ‘censorship net’, and an article about Iran, all placed in its own dedicated search block. 

However, while one can certainly seek out in-depth pieces about profound issues like capital punishment, conservation, diversity and the like, Google pointed out that lighter search terms, like Lego, can also yield in-depth articles on related aspects such as engineering, gender issues and art.

In its post, the company also noted that while users can expect to receive in-depth search results from well known publishers, they will also likely find articles from lesser-known publications and blogs. The feature will apparently be rolled out over the course of the next few days.

To the point

This may seem like a simple feature, but it is one that we are both heartened and excited to see being implemented. To our minds, it seems like deep thought has taken a backseat to the pithy and instantaneous as delivered via Twitter in recent years.

Thus, we hope that Google can do its part in bringing longform explorations – and deeper, wiser thinking that these can stimulate -  to the content forefront again.  

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