Google Offers Researchers a 'Drink from the Fire Hose'

Google Inc. announced it would make two new services available to the higher education research community--access to Web search and machine translations--as part of a new University Research Programs effort. The search firm made the announcement at its higher ed Faculty Summit held July 26 to 27 in Mountain View, CA.

Google said the goal of the project was "to promote research that creates a greater understanding of the Web. We want to make it easy for researchers to analyze millions of queries in a reasonably short amount of time. We feel that such research can benefit everyone."

The first service, "the University Research Program for Google Search," is designed to give university researchers "high-volume programmatic access to Google Search, whose huge repository of data constitutes a valuable resource for understanding the structure and contents of the Web," Google said.

The company said it wanted to help bootstrap Web research by offering basic information about specific search queries. "Since the program builds on top of Google's search technology, you'll no longer have to operate your own crawl and indexing systems," Google said.

"We hope this will help enable some useful research...."

The second service, Google Translate, would allow researchers "programmatic access to Google's translation service," including "detailed word alignment information" and "a list of the n-best translations with detailed scoring information."

Google also said it has launched a website, called "Google Code for Educators," focused on computer science topics at the university level. The site "lets us share the knowledge we've built up around things like distributed systems and AJAX programming.," Google said.

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About the Author

Paul McCloskey is contributing editor of Syllabus.

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