In a tweet that got the world buzzing last night, Twitter Engineer Pankaj Gupta (who I have the privilege of calling a friend through the NASA Tweetup experience) congratulated his team for a job well done in rolling out new search functionality for the platform. The net blew up.
Today the tweet becomes reality in the form of a new way to search within the Twitter website.
At a glance, you can see that search queries now autocomplete below the search box with users you follow and recommended searches for popular terms (much like Google Instant). Looking at the example below I searched for Carrie with Children, a popular blogger who is a friend of mine, and not only did I see her pages, but it also suggested Carrie Underwood.
What does this mean? Well for starters your title and bio on Twitter will be very important, as well as your connections. I tried a number of different searches for “Mashable” “music” “social media” and more, you can see the results in the photos.
Update: In a blog post direct from Twitter, they describe the new features in detail:
Spelling corrections: If you misspell a term, we’ll automatically show results for your intended query.
Related suggestions: If you search for a topic for which people use multiple terms, we will provide relevant suggestions for terms where the majority of that conversation is happening on Twitter.
Results with real names and usernames: When you search for a name like ‘Jeremy Lin,’ you’ll see results mentioning that person’s real name and their Twitter account username.
Results from people you follow: In addition to seeing ‘All’ or ‘Top’ Tweets for your search, you can also now see Tweets about a given topic from only the people you follow when you select the ‘People you follow’ view.
Viewing Tweets about a topic from just the people you follow is a great way to find useful information and join the conversation.
The feature isn’t available for all users, as I’ve tried this on Google Chrome, Firefox, and Safari browsers on three different accounts, @OnIdeas, @Alarmdotcom (our client) and my own personal @nickcicero – so far only my account worked.