Are we going to see a new alternative added to the growing list of online content search solutions (I wrote about some of them here)?
So what do we have so far? popularity search engine (Google), semantic search engine, location aware search engine, blog search engine, spam free blog search engine, social search engine, conversational search engine, visual search engine, passive search engine, social bookmarking search engine. Did I miss any?
The new alternative is a profile based search engine. I’m not talking about Google Web History solution for personalized search engine using historical searches for better qualifying search result. It is a great idea though. I’m talking about using information, about me, from my profile, to better fit results to my search query. For instance if I’m a programmer searching using the Hibernate keyword I don’t want to see results about bears. If I’m a doctor querying about Viagra I don’t want to get all the spam in the world from now till eternity. If I’m 20 years old my world is different than the life of anyone else (if you call it a life after 30:)). Now these examples are for static profile attribute, yet there are many dynamic qualifiers that can be used to improve search results. One example was implemented already in location-aware search engines using your where about. Another is using your network dynamics like what that Delver is trying to do.
It was the Web 2.0 applications with Facebook, as one of its leading example, that helped us to realize that one’s profile is not just name, email and contact. Your network (friends and groups), media choices (pictures, movies, books, and games), and activities (feed, expending your network, and participation) is also part of who you are. So, why don’t use it to help us find relevant content?