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Google will start showing AI-powered search results to users who didn't opt in

If you’re in the US, you might see a new shaded section at the top of your Google Search results with a summary answering your inquiry, along with links for more information. That section, generated by Google’s generative AI technology, used to appear only if you’ve opted into the Search Generative Experience(SGE) in the Search Labs platform. Now, according to, Google has started adding the experience on a “subset of queries, on a small percentage of search traffic in the US.” And that is why you could be getting Google’s experimental AI-generated section even if you haven’t switched it on.

spyd3r , avatar

Just give me back the results from the 00’s era of google. They need to go backwards not ““forwards””.

FiniteBanjo ,

Well now what am I supposed to switch to after DuckDuckGo didn’t give relevant results?

Kuvwert ,

I just today spun up my own searxng docker container and I’m pretty excited to start using it!

time_fo_that ,

I got a Google Gemini “text message” in Google messages today. I couldn’t find a way to turn it off, so I just blocked and reported it as spam lol

MyNamesNotRobert , (edited )

Normal search results are already littered with useless ai generated seo optimized crap. It’s got to the point where sometimes it’s quicker to learn the knowledge you seek the old fashion way: by reading books.

Enshitification must lose.

bbuez ,

🤓 Well you see actually we trained all our models off all historical text written by humans so it will be more human and you don’t have to read again

Ive seen akin to this sentiment online and its very baffling

Belgdore ,

I just assume that these people never have any problems that they have to solve personally. Otherwise they would be frustrated by the inability to find necessary information. They are either rich or children or both.

MyNamesNotRobert ,

Oh, they trained their ais off of that all right… And then filtered out all the stuff they didn’t like such as useful information.

CheeseNoodle ,

This is how google starts telling people that brawndo is what plants crave.

Texas_Hangover ,

Goddammit! Am I gonna have to relearn that Dewey decimal crap?

kawa , avatar

I’m happy to have my own SearxNG instance…

RampantParanoia2365 ,

Almost every time I ask a direct question, the two AI answers almost always directly contradict each other. Yesterday I asked if vinegar cuts grease. I received explanations for both why its an excellent grease cutter, and why it doesn’t because it’s an acid.

Murdoc ,

Showing different viewpoints in order to not appear biased. It’s the cornerstone of democracy after all.


time_fo_that ,

I think this will be a major issue with AI. Just because it was trained on a huge wealth of knowledge doesn’t mean that it was trained on correct knowledge.

kent_eh ,

Just because it was trained on a huge wealth of knowledge doesn’t mean that it was trained on correct knowledge.

Which makes its correct answers and it’s confidently wrong answers look as plausible as each other. One needs to apply real intelligence to determine which to trust, makikg the AI tool mostly useless.

time_fo_that ,


sc_griffith , avatar

I don’t see any reason being trained on writing informed by correct knowledge would cause it to be correct frequently. unless you’re expecting it to just verbatim lift sentences from training data

eronth ,

Lol. The generated result that is incomplete and slower than the rest of the search. I usually scroll past it because it’s not done generating. If it does generate fast enough, it’s usually too vague or broad

werefreeatlast ,

Yes, you can cure cancer according to the results…

  1. Dr Williams Oz. Cancer pill center 3)I ate a corn dog and it cured my can…
  2. research into cancer cures has come u…
  3. at McDonald’s we too have canc…
  4. the best cancer cures by Motley Fo…
  5. top 20 best ways to iPhone your canc…
Zuberi , avatar


Clbull ,

This may actually be a net improvement to the Google Search experience, since the engine is borderline unusable without uBlock Origin. But also it feels weird that Google would make an AI generated prompt the focal point and not the entire rows of sponsored ads that litter all search results.

How did the big tech industry get this terminally stupid?

GlassHalfHopeful , (edited ) avatar

…the engine is borderline unusable without uBlock Origin.

Chris, would you elaborate more on this experience?

Update: Who’s Chris? Curse you, speech to text.

JimboDHimbo ,

I’m not Chris, but it’s all the dang “sponsored” search results that populate when googling without using uBlock Origin.

dezmd , avatar

Ive used UBO so long I forget regulwr people see a diffeent internet. Google results are still suffering.

GlassHalfHopeful , avatar

This is exactly my case. Ads on apps as well. I completely forget that people have to see all that constantly.

I wonder how much real estate that sponsored content takes. Then again, not enough to visit google and turn off UBO.

CosmicCleric , avatar

Update: Who’s Chris? Curse you, speech to text.

Speech to text has gotten me into trouble so many times, it’s actually comical at this point.

GlassHalfHopeful , avatar

😁 Me too. This was rare for me. FUTO with offline STT has been such a boon. I’m glad to be away from google’s gboard.

Blackmist ,

Half the top results are usually AI generated garbage anyway, don’t see how a little more is going to hurt…

cy_narrator ,

Bing used to do that already no?

FeelThePower ,

another win for the startpage gang

cy_narrator ,

Technically if you submit a query to the search engine, you do so because you want answer to a question in the best way possible without having to do too much digging.

So does it matter if it uses AI to help you? I say its a great feature.

TexasDrunk ,

No. A lot of times I’m looking to compare many answers. I’ll give you an example.

If I want to look for interesting barbecue rubs that I haven’t tried before I’ll query a search engine. Historically (not so much recently) Google has been better at searching through forums than a direct forum search. So I can check many different sources for the ratios people are using and make my decision.

Google’s half baked AI is really terrible right now. It has a memory of about two answers, barely understands context, and hallucinates more often than both copilot and ChatGPT.

Now I’m looking for a coffee rub and it’s giving me injection advice (happened when I tested Gemini), it gets barbecue styles mixed up, doesn’t follow dietary restrictions that are explicitly stated, and will give you recipes for the wrong cut and type of meat.

It’s not ready, and anyone trusting it for an answer to a question is going to have a bad time. If you have to verify it by checking a bunch of links anyway then it’s not only worthless, it’s making search take longer and take up screen real estate.

cy_narrator ,

Now I’m looking for a coffee rub and it’s giving me injection advice

Wooooo what?

TexasDrunk ,

Brisket coffee rub is fairly common. I only know one guy who uses a coffee injection because it’s not common, although other injections are pretty common for brisket.

I have no idea why it went off on that particular tangent. I guess whatever barbecue data it was trained on had a lot of injection advice along with the coffee rubs.

Plopp ,

I’m searching to get specific information, and good information. I’ve seen LLMs make shit up and be wrong enough times for me not to trust them. I’d rather turn that feature off.

UckyBon ,

We’re in the technology sub. People here are old enough to know how to Google (old forums, preferably Reddit, as Lemmy is absent), they don’t know how to use an AI effectively (just look at how they’re trying to justify that). Don’t worry about the downvotes and their nonsense responses. Those are the same people who microwave their water instead of using an electric kettle.

cy_narrator ,

I actually get a kick out of downvote score

UckyBon ,

As on all social media people here (group)think that they are the smartest. But Lemmy is also a bubble, one with people who don’t want to innovate or experience new things. Very weird for something so tech focused.

BigMikeInAustin ,

All the talk about how much computing power and electricity AI uses, and then Google and Bing just run it for every (most? many? some?) search.

skooks ,

Isn’t it the training of the models which is the most energy intensive? whereas generating some text in answer to a question is probably not super intensive. Caveat: I know nothing

stsquad ,

Yes training is the most expensive but it’s still an additional trillion or so floating point operations per generated token of output. That’s not nothing computationally.

andrew , avatar

Just consider how long it takes GPT4 to answer a question. Anywhere from a few seconds to a minute in my experience. There’s at least one A100 at probably 400w going full throttle that whole time, plus all the supporting hardware.

otter ,

I’ll be looking for a uBlockOrigin filter when it hits for me

I try to avoid google search when I can, but this should solve the problem for the rest of the time

squid_slime , avatar

Plenty of other search engine that need your attention 🫠

donio ,

I wish that was the case but sadly most of them are basically Bing or Google frontends or belong to entities that I trust even less. As far as I can tell there are very few independent crawls out there.

AstroLightz ,

SearXNG is fairly decent if you can set that up.

donio ,

SearXNG is great at what it does but it falls into the Bing/Google/etc-frontend category since it just forwards your query to one of the search engines it has modules for. It doesn’t have its own crawl and index.

GreatAlbatross , avatar

Kagi has been doing a decent job for me, with the downside that it’s paid, and does use results from other places.
They go into detail about how they work, but it’s them paying for results from lots of engines, plus their own engine, then heavy duty filtering of the results.
Plus a ML results summarizer you can press after searching.

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