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Amit Singhal

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Amit Singhal
Born 1968/9
Uttar Pradesh
Alma mater Cornell University
Thesis Term weighting revisited (1997)
Doctoral advisor Gerard Salton

Amitabh Kumar "Amit" Singhal (born 1968/9) is senior vice president and software engineer at Google Inc., a Google Fellow, and the head of Google's core ranking team.[1][2] Born in Jhansi, a city in the state of Uttar Pradesh, India,[3] Singhal received a Bachelor of Engineering degree in computer science from IIT Roorkee in 1989.[4] He continued his computer science education in the United States, and received an M.S. degree from University of Minnesota Duluth in 1991.[5]

Singhal continued his studies at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York and received a Ph.D. degree in 1996.[5] At Cornell, Singhal studied with Gerard Salton, a pioneer in the field of information retrieval, the academic discipline which forms the foundation of modern search. John Battelle, in his book "The Search" calls Gerard Salton "the father of digital search." He got interested in the problem of search in 1990 at the University of Minnesota Duluth. After getting a Ph.D. in 1996, Singhal joined AT&T Labs (previously a part of Bell Labs), where he continued his research in information retrieval, speech retrieval and other related fields.[5]

In 2000, he was persuaded by his friend Krishna Bharat to join Google.[5] Singhal runs Google's core search quality department. He and his team are responsible for the Google search algorithms. According to New York Times, Singhal is the master of what Google calls its "ranking algorithm" — the formulas that decide which Web pages best answer each user's question.[6]

As a reward for his rewrite of the search engine in 2001, Singhal was named a "Google Fellow".[7] In 2011 he was inducted as a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.[8][9] Fortune named Singhal one of the smartest people in tech.[10] In 2011, Singhal was given the Outstanding Achievement in Science and Technology Award at The Asian Awards.[11] He writes about the University of Minnesota Duluth:

"UMD was the turning point in my life. Studying Information Retrieval with Don Crouch and then Don recommending that I move to Cornell to study with Gerard Salton, is the main reason behind my success today. Don gave me the love for search, I have just followed my passion ever since."[5]

—Amit Singhal


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