Facebook Wants to Be Cooler Than the Dictionary
It’s hard to keep up when you don’t understand the latest terms.
But Facebook is developing a new technology that could learn new slang and buzzwords from the coolest of the cool kids: Facebook users.
The company was just awarded a patent for developing a “social glossary.” The patent was granted in February, as Business Insider reports, but Facebook (FB) has been working on the trend-tracking technology for years.
The new tool completely bypasses any arbiters of words like the editors at Merriam-Webster. Instead, new words would be culled from We The People of the Internet.
The patent filing says Facebook could learn new words by looking at user status updates, comments, and messages, tracking the kinds of new slang people are using and deleting the passe, to stay on trend with the latest abbreviations, terms, and acronyms.
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While Facebook didn’t say exactly how the glossary tech would be used, the patent filing suggested the data could create better predictive text, put new words into autocorrect functions, and better track what’s trending on the social network.
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Facebook uses the example that it could add a term like “rickrolled” into the social glossary “as a verb related to an action that one user can perform upon another user.”
Of course, rickrolling has been a thing on the Internet for over a decade.
But you already knew that without Facebook’s help…didn’t you?