View Full Version : WolframAlpha.

May 16th, 2009, 20:16

The site is in a two day test phase. (I think).

Looks like a worthy adversary to Google.

If you get the error message, you will see a reference to something that was posted not long ago on this site .
Although I/we cannot take credit for it, it does seem a bit coincidental.

The thread I refer to is here:

WolframAlpha is here: http://www.wolframalpha.com/


May 17th, 2009, 07:08
Piece of cr@p!

I put in beta-normal, student-t and Posssion distributions. It returned - duh???

I put in Latin Hypercube sampling. It returned - WTF??

I put in Triangulation. It returned TYPES of TRIANGLES.

And to say its supposed to be scientific....

Just a fad. Prolly give it around 3 weeks before people ignore it totallly.

I don't think google needs to be worried.

"Worthy Adversary"?

Don't make me laugh W.

Have Phun

May 17th, 2009, 17:06
it's wikipedia with graphs and buit-in calculator, nothing to get excited about, IMO

May 17th, 2009, 17:14
Hello together

It's not that bad, at least better than the calculator in google. I wonder how long it will survive and when google will clone the functions of it. I like it, a bit competition to google is not bad.

Try this:
energy 1kg mass at 0.9c
speed of sound in water
Chemical Name xyz (e.g. 1,3,5-trinitrobenzene, 1,3-diisopropylbenzene), sucks at 1,2,4-trinitrobenzene , it even has 3D structures for e.g. styrene and mannitol
molar mass acetone
ascii 66
Distance City 1 to City 2

Here it sucks
electron wavelenght at 500 keV
c in water / speed of light in water
solubility sodium acetate water
number carbon atoms butanole
ascii 0x66
0b111 xor 0b101 (no result)

May 17th, 2009, 18:59
It is only in a test phase Aimless.

I will give it one month from its official launch and then decide.


May 18th, 2009, 04:27
"temperature december 24, 1939 in new york"


May 19th, 2009, 15:37
First of all, google has had a build-in calculator/unit converter for a very long time.

Second of all, I think that an endeavor like this is definitely doomed until computers can at least precisely understand long paragraphs of text (which are what is needed to specify the meaning of more complex searches). This comes from the simple fact that a simple one-sentence "natural language" question can often be interpreted in a bunch of different ways, depending on context and many other things. The only thing that a search engine like this can do then is to choose the most common meaning for the sentence, which will mean that while this search engine can be good for Joe Blow, it will suck and only return irrelevant results for most more advanced searches. It can of course also choose to display results for all possible interpretations of all given questions, but this will result in hundreds of pages of results to sift through before finding anything remotely relevant what you really wanted to find.

After all, what a search engine like this does in the end is to translate a "natural language" sentence to the correct set of exact search terms, which is a kind of "compression". As has been proven in computational science, only a "simple" enough subset of data (which often means "common" in a certain data space can be successfully compressed with a given algorithm, while there must always be another (larger) part of the data set that cannot be compressed (i.e. the more "uncommon" data). This uncompressable data will even become bigger than its original form when you attempt to compress it, which in this case manifests itself as half a natural language essay to describe a more complex search. Not only is it harder to formulate and type in this essay than just the corresponding pure search terms, but as mentioned at the beginning of this post, there will probably be a long time before a search engine can make anything useful out of a "question" in the form of a larger text mass like this.