Eweek.com – Microsoft’s acquisition of the domain Kumo.com, which means “cloud” or “spider” in Japanese, is a signal to some that Kumo will be the brand name for the re-launched Windows Live Search feature, which has lagged far behind competitors such as Google and Yahoo.
Microsoft had proclaimed in a July release that the company was “passionate about improving search intelligence [because] keyword-based search lags in accuracy.” It was part of a release in which Microsoft announced it would acquire Powerset, a “natural language” search engine start-up based in San Francisco, for north of $100 million.
Powerset created a search technology that bases search on an attempt to understand the full meanings of entered phrases and return results. “About a third of searchers don’t get answers on their first try, and have to perform multiple searches in order to find the information they are looking for,” the release stated. “Microsoft’s acquisition of Powerset is an exciting step in the right direction in resolving these issues.”
These latest reports also suggest Microsoft plans to focus on re-energizing its own search brand rather than acquire Yahoo’s search assets…somewhat. Last Friday, Microsoft confirmed it hired Yahoo Search executive Sean Suchter to work on Live Search at Microsoft’s Silicon Valley Search Technology Center, where he will serve as general manager.