This week, Twitter rolled out the red carpet for a personalized new search experience designed to help users “find the most relevant Tweets, images, and videos.”
And so far, the reception to Twitter’s revamped infrastructure has been largely positive.
“To build this product, our infrastructure needed to support two major features: relevance-filtering of search results and the identification of relevant images and photos. Both features leverage a ground-up rewrite of the search infrastructure, with Blender and Earlybird at the core,” Twitter acknowledged in a blog post.
According to company officials, Twitter’s search team has swelled from three to fifteen engineers since 2008. Twitter has also “scaled our real-time search engine by two orders of magnitude — all this, while we replaced the search infrastructure in flight, with no major service interruptions.”
And by all accounts, the new highly personalized search experience provided by Twitter is garnering a reputation as social media’s coolest new attribute.
“Often, users are interested in only the most memorable Tweets or those that other users engage with,” the company admits. “In our new search experience, we show search results that are most relevant to a particular user. So search results are personalized, and we filter out the Tweets that do not resonate with other users.”
To accomplish these changes, Twitter’s search index now incorporates “static information on tweets,” like language and text; dynamic information, including user interactions with tweets; and any and all personal information available about the user performing the search.
“Our ranking function accesses the social graph and uses knowledge about the relationship between the searcher and the author of a Tweet during ranking,” Twitter says.
The search team is excited to build innovative search products that drive discovery and help our users. While the new search experience is a huge improvement over pure real-time search, we are just getting started. In the coming months, we will improve quality, scale our infrastructure, expand our indexes, and bring relevance to mobile.
At the conclusion of the post, Twitter put its money where its tweets are – at least with regard to promised future tweaks in the search experience. “If you are a talented engineer and want to work on the largest real-time search engine in the world,” the company says, “Twitter search is hiring for search quality and search infrastructure.”
That’s right. Twitter is hiring. And something tells me more than a few resumes will be sent in, so now would be a good time to jump on this opportunity should it suit your core competencies.