In an effort to make searching easier, Bing says it has streamlined technical searches.
And, according to Bing, that means easier API and code search reference queries, special treatment for queries with non-alphanumeric characters, clearly highlighted information about software, and instant answers for queries about Microsoft products.
Bing says it has been working to develop a more natural way for users to address technical queries for the last year.
In a blog post, Shabbar Husain, senior program manager of the Bing Tech Team, says these streamlined technical searches could include consumers looking to download or troubleshoot software or a programmer who wants to get the technical details of an API.
According to Bing, the best way to learn about a new API is to see a description and an example of how it is being used, but the information is often buried in the API documentation, which has historically made searches difficult.
In addition, Bing says technical developer queries often contain non-alphanumeric characters like, :: (scope), ++ (operators), and () (function), which are difficult for search engines to handle. That's why Bing says it is giving special treatment to them so the context is preserved and relevant results are displayed on top.
Bing also says it has determined the top factors among consumers looking for software include cost, reviews, and safety, as well as official or verified sites from which to download the software and similar products that might be better than the product included in the original search. As a result, Bing says it has developed an experience in which the entity pane provides a quick description of the product, along with clearly displayed information about cost, official and trusted download locations, and reviews:
"Now people can easily find the right software directly from the authoritative source without having to take additional steps," Husain writes.
What's more, Bing says it has rolled out instant answers at the top of results pages to help consumers find information about Microsoft technologies. That includes relevant answers to common questions.
"We're confident that you won't find these capabilities on any other search engine," Husein adds.
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