Given the popularity of the natural language user interface Siri, which was acquired by Apple for $200 million, I've wondered if anyone knows why Microsoft killed "English Query" on SQL Server.

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    Related SO question: What happened with SQL English query?. Though doesn't give a definitive explanation as to why. – Martin Smith Feb 11 '12 at 14:23
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    +1 I hope this doesn't get closed as there is doubtless a definitive answer and it might surface someday :-) – Jack Douglas Feb 13 '12 at 15:32
  • @Martin I was speaking to the "answerable" bit :-) Blunders has assured us that for him it is a "actual problem faced". Good/bad questions are decided by votes (which is why you get so many). Is it "practical"? Dunno but I don't think it is "impractical" :-) – Jack Douglas Feb 13 '12 at 15:58
  • @Jack Douglas: Thanks for the invite to chat about why you deleted my answer, but I've always found SE.Chat to be confusing. I don't have any issue with you deleting my answer, though I am puzzled as to why you didn't delete the other speculative answer too; just because it's a 3rd parties opinion doesn't make it any less speculative; plus, that source even mistakenly states MS will "continue" the product. Also, guessing you delete the comments below the current answer, but maybe not; that was also confusing, though understand they were not leading anywhere, since onedaywhen and I disagree. – blunders Feb 13 '12 at 16:09
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    +1 @Jack Douglas: For not closing the question, and backing up that there is "doubtless a definitive answer and it might surface someday" - which it did, thanks! – blunders Feb 13 '12 at 16:30
up vote 8 down vote accepted

The reason it was dropped was because of lack of use. This is confirmed in the MS response to a Customer asking if it could be re-instated.

Posted by Microsoft on 1/13/2012 at 1:37 PM

English Query feature when introduced in SQL Server was not a popular feature and we didn't find lot of customers using it. So it was eventually removed from the product. We have no plans to invest in such technology so I am resolving this as "won't fix". You can look at the Semantic Search feature in SQL Server 2012 to see if that meets your needs.

  • +1 @Martin Smith: Great, thank you -- just curious, how did you find it? (Meaning for example the Google query that lead you to find it, since I tried everything I could think of and was unable to find anything from MS.) Again, thanks! – blunders Feb 13 '12 at 16:24
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    @blunders - It just occurred to me that this may have come up on Connect before so I searched that site for "English Query" and it came up in the search results there. – Martin Smith Feb 13 '12 at 16:27

See this brief article:

Microsoft hasn't said much as to why English Query was [discontinued]. One could speculate that it may be due to lack of interest or an inability to provide accurate translations.

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    -1 Speculative, and not a fact-based answer. – blunders Feb 13 '12 at 16:34

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