Google expands some acronym searches

A search for np tree turns up a lot of hits for Joshua Tree National Park, with the phrase "National Park" bolded in page titles and snippets. This doesn't work for all searches involving the term np -- for example, it doesn't work for a search for np by itself. How new is this feature? What other acronyms does Google expand?

4 Responses to “Google expands some acronym searches”

  1. nandhp Says:

    fedex->federal express

  2. Jesse Ruderman Says:

    In a search for ‘fedex shipping’, the phrase “federal express” is bold. But in a search for ‘fedex’, the same phrase is not bold when it appears.

    So now we have two examples, ‘np’ and ‘fedex’, and they both require other (related?) terms to be present.

  3. Sebastian Moser Says:

    it seems as if google (logically) needed a related term to be able to find out which acronym you mean… seems logical to me… ;)

  4. Block Sheep Says:

    I wonder if any of Google’s smarts come from acronyms marked-up with the ABBR element in HTML. Does Google learn accronyms from information in web pages, or did they complile a list themselves? It would make sense that they need a corresponsing word to know what the accronym means if it’s getting this from context clues in the pages it indexes.

    If this is the case then it’s a cryin’ shame that we won’t see the same thing happen with quotes until the Q element is supported by IE (or IE is bumped from being “dominant”).