MENLO PARK, Calif. — Google says it recently overhauled the closely guarded formula that runs its influential Internet search engine to give better answers to the increasingly complex questions posed by Web surfers.
The modifications were made as part of an update called “Hummingbird” that Google rolled out without disclosing. It’s a change that could have a major impact on traffic to other websites.
Google disclosed the existence of the new search formula at an event held in the Menlo Park, Calif. garage where CEO Larry Page and fellow co-founder Sergey Brin started the company 15 years ago.
Google is describing Hummingbird as the most dramatic alteration to its search engine since it revised the way it indexes websites three years ago as part of a redesign called “Caffeine.”