When it comes to Twitter, it’s a great place to get recent news and thoughts from different people in 140 characters or less. But when it comes to finding something that’s even remotely old on the social network, I would have to wish you good luck. After all, trying to find something that’s even 6 hours old can be a pain to find sometimes. Imagine trying to find something that’s over a day or two old, or even a week old. Again, I’d have to wish you good luck.
It seems that Twitter has recognized the fact that searching the backlogs of user’s tweets can be really frustrating. They understand that they need to get better at searching for specific tweets.
On Thursday, an abusively technical blog post published by Sam Luckenbill, Twitter’s Director of Engineering for Search Infrastructure, and in it, he said that the company is going to try taking a stab at the tech underpinning their search engine to make it better at identifying what it is people want to search for.
Luckenbill said, “currently, the core search infrastructure team only maintains indexes of Tweets and users.”
Since its inception, Twitter has evolved into something more than just a stream of simple tweets. Now, you’ll find Periscope livestreams, Vine videos and more filling in the Twitter stream. But what if you are looking for a specific funny and viral video or clip that you saw 6 or 7 months ago? If you wanted to find it, you’d have to fire up Google and do a search for it on there. Screw trying to search for it on Twitter.
Someday, if Twitter gets it right, looking for a specific tweet or tweets easily could become a reality (hopefully) sooner rather than later. Not only might Twitter want to build out their potentially newfangled search capabilities, but they may want to, as Luckenbill wrote, “to build a new media product we might want a new operator to find Tweets with GIFs, or to use content as a ranking signal.”
So what could Luckenbill mean? Any thoughts?