Robert_Charlton - 9:22 am on Sep 15, 2012 (gmt 0)
I would say, rather, they thought this was *easy* - a place to start, play, experiment and demonstrate...
This little game might eventually apply directly to analysis of social networks. In looking at social connectivity on the web, Google is obviously looking for the most efficient and scalable ways to determine context.. much the same as it's been doing in text search for many years, and more recently in image search. Here Google is starting loosely with the context of people who've acted in movies.
In image search, eg, it should be noted that, once context is limited, it's much easier to interpret data. See my comment on this thread (from July 2, 2012, roughly 6 weeks after the Knowledge Graph was introduced)...
Google Makes "Smarter Best Guesses" On Image Search
...once subject/location/context is identified, image searching becomes significantly more efficient and nuanced. It becomes much more like site: search (pun intended here) than like, say, a global search of organic results.
Note, btw, that for the "Bacon Number", a NY Magazine article [nymag.com...] reports, per an email from Google, that "Google's Bacon-number search doesn't utilize IMDb" as another Bacon Number website does, so its results are currently less complete.
I'm thinking that Google is here "excluding" IMDb as basis for a test (assuming that's actually possible), perhaps to learn how to reproduce IMDb's already existing set of data by other means.