Google +1 is Facebook Like for your search results

Google is going one louder with +1. The big G is tinkering with a new way of recommending search results, similar to the thumbs-up of the Facebook Like button.

Google is going one louder with +1. The Big G is tinkering with a new way of recommending search results, similar to the thumbs-up of the Facebook Like button .

When you search Google and get a page of links to search results, you'll get the option to give each link a +1, telling friends that this link was helpful, cool or relevant.

When you add your +1 to a search result, it won't affect the search rankings -- yet -- but your name will appear next to results when your friends and contacts search for similar things. That will help your chums find things more likely to be relevant to their search. Data from +1s will be analysed by Google and could eventually become part of the fiendishly clever algrithm, helping to make results more relevant.

Contacts are pulled from your Google account from Gmail, Buzz and Reader. Google already has a separate Social Search feature that shows which of your mates have been discussing what you've searched for, but +1 actually integrates your friends' activity into the main search results.

It could also help if you're trying to track down a website, video or article someone told you about but you can't remember the exact details. Google something in the right area and your friend's +1 will show you which is the right result.

Google has had a busy day, celebrating Robert "y'know, like the burner" Bunsen and announcing it will send fibre-optic superfast broadband to Kansas City. In less happy news for the search giant, it's been forced to undertake twice-yearly reviews after a number of privacy cockups.

+1 is still only an experiment, so you may not see it yet. To get involved, visit and click to join the +1 experiment. You must be signed in to your Google Account.

Does Google's latest experiment get your +1? Let us know in the comments.

About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.


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