Microsoft search engine to use Wolfram tech for answers on health and maths

Wolfram Alpha to provide search results for Bing

Microsoft has teamed up Wolfram Alpha to provide results for its Bing search engine.

Wolfram, unlike Google, provides specific answers to questions rather than a list of links, and will be used to boost Bing’s results in areas including maths, health and nutrition.

Many of Wolfram’s answers to questions take data from public and licensed databases. The firm began offering its API (Application Programming Interface) in October to allow third party developers to build on to it for their own offerings.

According to the Wolfram blog: “By using our API, Bing will be able to seamlessly access the tens of thousands of algorithms and trillions of pieces of data from Wolfram Alpha, and directly incorporate the computations in its search results.”

Microsoft told BBC News that the nutritional and fitness data in Wolfram Alpha could help around 90 million Americans who go on a diet each year.

"When you search for specific food items on Bing, you’ll get a nutrition quick tab that allows you to learn more about it," the firm said. "You also get a nutrition facts label at the bottom of the results page that summarises all information on that food item in a very familiar and friendly format."

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