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This session on Web search features Blaise Aguera y Arcas (Bing), Ben Gomes (Google), Ilya Segalovich (Yandex) and Conrad Wolfram (Wolfram Alpha). Jochen Wegner (Focus Online) moderates.
Blaise Aguera y Arcas
In 2004 Blaise Aguera y Arcas founded Seadragon, Inc., to develop ideas in scalable architectures and user interfaces for interacting with large volumes of visual information, potentially over a narrow-bandwidth connection. Microsoft bought Seadragon at the beginning of 2006.
The Seadragon team's most visible project to date is Photosynth (labs.live.com/photosynth), a collaboration with researchers at Microsoft Research and the University of Washington.
Ben Gomes is a Distinguished Engineer at Google where he is a lead for the company's engineering efforts on search features. Gomes has been with Google for more than ten years and has worked in the development of nearly all aspects of the Google search service ranging from crawling and indexing to ranking and new feature design.
Prior to Google, Gomes earned his PhD in computer science from UC Berkeley. He was born in Dar-es-salaam, Tanzania.
Ilya Segalovich is one of Yandex's co-founders and has been Yandex Chief Technology Officer and a director since 2003. He began his career working on information retrieval technologies in 1990 at Arcadia Company, where he headed its software team. From 1993 to 2000, he led the retrieval systems department for CompTek International.
Mr. Segalovich received a degree in geophysics from the Moscow Geologic Exploration Institute in 1986 and placed second in the All Soviet Union Math Olympiad in 1981. He also took an active role in starting Russian research and scientific initiatives in information retrieval and computational linguistics.
Jochen Wegner is editor-in-chief of Focus Online, one of the most widely read German-language news sites with 3 million readers.
Before that Wegner was deputy science editor of Focus News Magazine. He regularly published cover stories about online media, high tech and research.
Conrad Wolfram founded Wolfram Research Europe Ltd. in 1991 and in 1997 also became Strategic Director at Wolfram Research, Inc., founded by brother Stephen.
The companies' Mathematica software is renowned worldwide for its computational capabilities, and is now also recognized as an innovative software development environment and interactive deployment platform.
In 2009, the Wolfram|Alpha knowledge engine spin-off was launched to dramatic interest - both because of its new approach and the unique combination of Wolfram Technologies which made it possible.
Wolfram's instigation and leadership of business and technical initiatives has been central to many new directions in Wolfram companies and more widely in the technical computing industry. He is a regular speaker on topics ranging from future technology to the new era of computational knowledge and the reform of math education. Wolfram holds an MA in natural sciences and maths from the University of Cambridge.
Tool for finding information, especially on the Internet or World Wide Web. Search engines are essentially massive databases that cover wide swaths of the Internet. Most consist of three parts: at least one program, called a spider, crawler, or bot, which crawls through the Internet gathering information; a database, which stores the gathered information; and a search tool, with which users search through the database by typing in keywords describing the information desired (usually at a Web site dedicated to the search engine). Increasingly, metasearch engines, which search a subset (usually 10 or so) of the huge number of search engines and then compile and index the results, are being used.