Google is slowly switching from its long-standing use of Dictionary.com definitions to Answers.com definitions. The migration began on Jan 18. Some may still see Dictionary.com definitions, but this example shows how Answers.com material is coming into play. Why the change? “We’re always experimenting with new services to gauge whether they are useful to users,” said Google spokesperson Nate Tyler.
What does this mean for the researcher in terms of results?
+ Both Answers.com and Dictionary.com supply results from the The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. The only difference is that the edition Answers.com uses has a 2003 copyright date.
+ Answers.com also offers free access to an audio pronounciations (click on the speaker icon) of terms. Dictionary.com charged for this service.
+ Answers.com pages can provide you with more than just a dictionary definition. You’ll also find encyclopedia entries, translations, and content from other ready reference tools. Here’s a complete list of the sources included in their database.
Finally, it’s worth mentioning that a9 has offered Answers.com content since it launched last year.