Blekko Rivals Google with Crowd-sourced Search
Blekko Nov. 1 launched to public beta to challenge Google, Bing and Yahoo with a curated search engine geared to pare spam.Blekko Nov. 1 became the latest startup to challenge Google with a search engine that lets its users customize and refine searches to can some of the spam. Machine-generated search engines such as Google, Yahoo and Bing take users' queries and search for these digital needles of information in an increasingly expanding haystack of billions of Web pages.
Blekko tries a crowd-sourced approach to search results to help users better pinpoint answers. Any user may test the Blekko beta with a feature called slashtags, which group the search queries people define on Blekko within the search box.
Blekko CEO Rich Skrenta offered an example of a logical Blekko use on his personal blog Nov. 1. Skrenta was looking for a 2 percent cash-back credit card. A search for [cash back credit card] produced spammed results on Google and Bing, so he made the blekko /money tag [cash back credit card /money] with the top 100 personal finance bloggers and received great results. Noting that search requires a lot of relevance data to help algorithms grok the billions of Web pages worldwide, Skrenta said that he wanted to use the crowd-sourced approach to make the "search engine better" instead of following Google and Bing's lead of hiring hundreds of contractors to refine relevance data.