Today we live in a world connected better than ever before – An era where wireless and broadband have enabled seamless connectivity powering creating and sharing of information never experienced before.  Accessing or searching information no more continues to challenge people. It is the filtering mechanism that is drawing more attention. Thanks to the endless information created every second, information consumption and not information seeking is the new question.

Twitter, Facebook, blogs, and other tools of mass content creating have been contributing to the web mountains of data at a rate more faster than they can understand / rank/ index them.  Amongst this information explosion what would be interesting to observe is the information seeking behavior and how the end user adapts or adepts to the millions of links thrown after every search made.

The year 2006 saw close to 2.7 billion searches on Google. By 2008 this number grew by over 1000% to cross 30 billion searches on Google.

The post Google era clearly had simplified information accessibility for the end user but the question that pops up is that during this time what were people using to search for information ?. In fact an interesting question to ponder over is how was information sought in B.G (before Google)era. Possible easily accessible resources to everybody were –

  1. Friends
  2. Family
  3. Extended Family and Friends

Referring to one’s network was something that everybody did as they sought answers to their queries – a trend that is starting to revive. People are exchanging information in real time and with tools like Twitter, Facebook, Friendfeed, Aardvark the idea of seeking knowledge from a person instead of a link in real time is gaining traction. And here is the reason why this this trend is here to stay –

  1. Better Connectivity –   We live in an over connected world where people at one point of time are logged onto to multiple platforms- including IM, Twitter, Facebook . In fact as people are spending more and more time online , getting connected to a knowledge expert is simpler using tools like Getafixx, which allows users to interact with experts rather than surfing through static content.
  2. Easier Information Consumption – Since the core motive of social search is to connect people to experts, there is no  bombardment of information, no overflow of millions of links –Meaning lesser spam.  Simplified information seeking path ensures that only relevant and accurate information reaches the user.
  3. Everybody can share – The concept of wisdom of crowds distinctly states that everybody is an expert at something.  The most important part of social search is identification of knowledge experts – and as users identify their expertise,  the system would validate their expertise by taking into account their contribution as experts.

Loaded with most of the features mentioned above- Getafixx is our first attempt to introduce the concept of Social Search over their IM. A gtalk bot that allows you to connect to knowledge experts and share it with others.

While the mechanism of seeking information is changing, the concept of social search and getafixx adds value to the entire process as it keeps interaction as its core objective – a feature that Web Search compensated with spam information. The next version of web search would predominantly be dominated by Social Search, for people are searching for people.

Search – a feature of the web that has evolved on the lines of Darwin’s theory – nearing perfection all the time now needs to be redefined.  Or maybe it’s time again to search for the right people.

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