What's in a Name?

A new way for aggregating business listings in Google Maps and Google+ Local.


Google Maps and Google+ Local are home to billions of business listings representing companies, organizations, shops, restaurants, entertainment venues, and public places like parks, hospitals, and transit stations.  As Google has described, the data comes from a variety of different sources such as Web sites, Yellow Pages, and even ordinary users, and must be aggregated to form the final listings.  I created a way to improve these listings based on business titles alone.  An estimated two billion listings were improved in testing.

Maintaining Listing Integrity

Here is an example of a business listing on Google+ Local.  The listing features a variety of information about the business and allows both the business owner and regular users to edit that information.  Though the algorithm I created for improving these listings is proprietary information held by Google, Google did apply for a patent on generating structured information from one or more sources in 2006.