Google to Rank Facts not Links?

With Google recently doing away with page rankings, it was only a matter of time before they announced a new way to score a websites page. Google’s current search engine tracks the number of incoming links to a website as a proxy that determines where the site will appear in search results. The downside of this is that websites that are linked to often will rise in the rankings, regardless of their quality or the amount of bad information represented on them as truth. This has helped several garbage sites achieve front page results, in place of sites more deserving of holding that coveted spot.

According to a New Scientist Report, a Google research team is developing a model that will measure the trustworthiness of the webpage, rather than it’s popularity on the web. This new system would count the number of inaccurate facts within the text of a site rather than counting the incoming links to it. By tracking the facts, Google would then develop a Knowledge-Based Trust Score for each site that would rate the trustworthiness of the site.

In order to obtain the score, the software accesses the Knowledge Vault. The Knowledge Vault is an automated database or “vast store of facts that Google has pulled off the internet. Facts the web unanimously agrees on are considered a reasonable proxy for truth,” according to the media report. This has many wondering, how accurate is this vault for identifying truth?

Of course this algorithm is still a prototype and the system is not been implemented online. If it comes into fruition, it would be some time before we were to alerted about its launch.

This is not the first algorithm that has been utilized as a judge for seeking truth online. There are several apps that attempt to help online users discover the truth. In fact, there is a browser extension called LazyTruth that attempts to identify fraudulent or hoax emails.

Google’s new ranking system prototype is an interesting concept; however, it leads one to beg the question, are we ready to trust Google to determine and provide us with what their vault declares as truth?