Fun interview with Googler Jeff Dean.  Particularly liked this part on conversational search (aka search-as-a-dialogue):
[We need] to understand big problems and sort of break them down into manageable chunks. For example, if I told you, “Please book me a trip to Washington DC.” That's a very high-level set of instructions. And if you're a human, you'd ask me a bunch of follow-up questions, “What hotel do you want to stay at?” “Do you mind a layover?” - that sort of thing. I don't think we have a good idea of how to break it down into a set of follow-up questions to make a manageable process for a computer to solve that problem. The search team often talks about this as the “conversational search problem.”
And we kind of have baby steps in this area. You can ask Google, “Who's the president of the United States of America?” And it will come back with “Barack Obama.” Then if you ask, “Who's he married to?” It will remember that “he” in this instance means “Barack Obama” and it knows what married means because we have this curated knowledge graph of facts about the world, and it will infer what sort of result you're looking for and will come back with “Michelle Obama.”
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