Google Adds Natural Search to Drive

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Google has brought the natural search capabilities of Google Search to Drive, making it easier and more intuitive to find your company files. Google is rolling out Natural Language Processing (NLP) worldwide and immediately so that people can search Drive in the same manner as they search the internet. With over 240 million users of Google Drive (as of 2014), even small changes have a big impact on productivity.

"Natural Language Processing (NLP) is a fancy way of saying “search like you talk,” said Josh Smith, the Product manager for Google Drive, in a blog announcement. "You can type things like “find my budget spreadsheet from last December” or “show me presentations from Anissa.” Drive will understand what you mean and give you the option to click for those specific search results. Drive NLP will get better with each query — so keep on searching."

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Google has also added spelling correction to Google Drive searches, also something very familiar in Google search. "When you're trying to find a doc fast, it's easy for typos to slip into your search," Smith says. "Drive now has a new autocorrect feature that suggests corrections to misspelled search terms — which can really help when your brain is moving faster than your fingers."

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Josh Smith says that Google additionally added a couple of small features to Google Doc:

  • You can now easily split your document into multiple columns in Docs. Just choose “Columns” in the “Format” drop-down menu when you need more formatting options to get your point across.
  • We know that work happens in all types of file formats. So, when you open, convert and edit non-Google files in Docs, Sheets and Slides, we’ll now save a copy for you. Just view or download the non-Google source file in its original format directly from Revision History in Docs, Sheets and Slides on the web.
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