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September 2010 Archives

September 1, 2010

blekko coverage and twitter glow

The Web Ain’t Dead. Blekko.com Has Come to Save It. (stephenpickering.com)

blekko Explains Itself: Exclusive Video (Update: Exclusive Invite) (battellemedia.com)

Blekko Makes Influencing the Influencers Easy (travismurdock.com)

Blekko: A Search Engine Which Is Also A Killer SEO Tool (searchengineland.com)

Blekko vs. Google: I Do Believe I’m Now in Love With BOTH Search Engines (web-savvy-marketing.com)

Blekko search: first impressions (economist.com)

The Upside-Down Logic of Taking on Google at Search (technologyreview.com)

Blekko search: Coming soon to a browser near you (memburn.com)

Link data from Blekko (receptional.com)

Blekko review (arhg.net)

New Search Engine Blekko Takes Vertical Search to a New Level (eyetraffic.com)

Taking Blekko out for a Spin (thenoisychannel.com)

Blekko Screencast And Founder Interview (techcrunch.com)

TechCrunch Review: The Blekko Search Engine Prepares To Launch (techcrunch.com)

Blekko Demos Slick New Search Engine (thenextweb.com)

Blekko: New Search Engine Lets You “Spin” The Web (searchengineland.com)

 

Using #blekko, have a wicked smile in my face, like the smile I had when I used Google back in 2000.

This #Blekko is freaking awesome. Example, I can search Apple Computers /History. Slashtags are going to change the web!

@bryanphelps @blekko is a new kind of crack. woot! You can't take just one bite of the stuff. Awesome :-)

Who cares about FB QnA! @blekko has managed to launch a search engine in 2010 & it actually works! Love it! Much needed goog competition!

@blekko love it! Relevance is awesome even for obscure sites! Open up the API soon & let the party begin!

#Blekko has a nice feature: you can track pages by AdSense ID :-)

I have officially created my first to slashtags on Blekko. I'm totally digging it. I feel like a superpower.

voteforme | Slashtags rock! @blekko has kept me up until 1am :-)

Finally got in to @blekko. Crowdsourced indexes that are social more amazing than I expected.

"you have marked the site www.ehow.com as spam. it is now dead to you." - I'm in love with @blekko!

#blekko /date is brilliant. sort reviews based on dates, weeds out -ve reviews of early versions of products, say dell u2410 :)

@blekko is pretty rad...

Loving the very intuitive interface for @blekko. Never thought I'd feel that way about search again!

I just made the /so slash tag on #Blekko to search the Stack Overflow trilogy - lovin' it!

Trying out new search engine Blekko. It has very cool 'slashtags built in' functionality and transparency http://blekko.com #search #blekko

got my #blekko account /very /cool. Thanks @blekko!

Dude. Blekko is pretty damn cool.

Wow. @blekko isn't half bad with search results.

So, I've been using @Blekko for today and I'm just blown away by the options. Researching via verticals just got very, very, easy.

Trying #blekko the new search engine. seems really good to me

yesiamben - Actually really impressed with @blekko! The search stuff seems good, the results are relatively spam free, and I love the SEO stuff... #win

Interestingly, @blekko is the only search engine to rank Google first for the query "search engine". Google lists Dogpile first.

nicholasmarx - Received my @blekko beta invite today. Loving it so far, very cool.

I think #blekko is right, security through obscurity doesn't work techcrunch.com/...

Searching for "ffmpegx iPad conversion," @blekko gave me way more useful results than google, even without slash tags. So impressed.

RT @RedUrbanNA: Finally gotten to play with Blekko http://blekko.com Slashtags are a real game changer. http://goo.gl/4h1H

The more I play with blekko the more I really like it. I think I am going to try and go blekko for a week

Nice "UX" slashtag on Blekko!! http://bit.ly/bZWqzm Google is still my primary search engine, but I now use Blekko for advanced search

@blekko been playing around with blekko this weekend and it's impressive. Still determining how to fit it into my normal web use

@justinhj dude, on that note, you seen @blekko? shit is fucking amazing

Searched "open office for mac" on Google and got nothing worth clicking on, used @Blekko and got what I wanted #blekkowins

Wow - @blekko is really neat. They definitely have something there.

@blekko That is awesome! Today, I've used blekko to find something on @techcrunch instead of using their search. It was way more productive.

Checking out @blekko The slashtag system makes it very easy to repeat searches and narrow the scope of a search

@blekko it will take some getting used to but I could see blekko becoming a verb.

Lightbulb just went off in my head on how @blekko works and it's freaking sweet. WTB Blekko search bar for Safari.

@blekko I'm currently testing blekko.com and am astonished by the exact and complete search results. Thumbs up!

Trying @blekko. A bit mind boggling to begin with but definitely interesting. A kind of "Command line for personal search".

stefankulk - Creating a slashtag on @Blekko is like setting up a @Google custom search (http://www.google.com/cse/), but ten times faster

Just tried blekko search engine -- "python /tech" gives me the programming language "python /science" gives me the snake -- cool! #blekko

Congrats #blekko for winning. I compared @blekko against Google CSE head2head with the same list of websites

@milesEfron But what @blekko is doing with them is quite different. The closest comparables are vertical search and custom search engines.

@bradwarwick there is a lot in @ blekko that you'll like too - I'll show you tomorrow (if you have time)

Wow - @blekko is really neat. They definitely have something there.

I am trying out @blekko right now and I LOVE IT

Need to make @blekko an online habit. Can get more done on @blekko in 5 minutes than would take 20 on other sites.

I'm really starting to love #blekko. Made it my homepage already.

Just created /green slashtag. As a LEED AP this looks like it will be a sweet tool Way to go Rich!

As a member of @blekko, I am now able to slash the web. SWEET!

Creating a slashtag on @Blekko is like setting up a @Google custom search (http://www.google.com/cse/), but ten times faster

Had a sense of achievement one more time using #Blekko to figure out where my friend will be in holidays.

@handshake20 have you heard of @blekko? I just started playing with the beta, has options to curate the web. cool stuff.

well since google has turned evil, i'm going to @blekko and waiting for them to start introducing /email and /apps

Just got an invite to test @blekko . I like what I see.. Very useful search engine!

Just got my blekko invite. This is seriously cool.

yeah. just received a beta invite for @blekko... first impression: awesome tool :)

Really impressed with Blekko, a new search engine currently in private beta. Easily created a sanews slashtag. Allows: strike action /sanews

I GOT MY @BLEKKO INVITE ALREADY!! I love you guys! New home page for sure

Blekko: the only latter-day Google search "competitor" I haven't immediately laughed at http://bit.ly/cCrghv (Still a bit geeks-only tho).

blekko is like a search engine for the top 5%. very clever. now plan to experiment with it for a week. starting. now.

Thank you @blekko for the invite to your new search engine. So far I am really liking it. suggestion: red links to blue or user customizable

And that's the end of "A Week With @Blekko". Went pretty well! Looking forward to giving everyone details on how it went!

#blekko rocks, Google killer. I've seen Chacha, Mahalo, Quintura, even Bing redesign, so I totally didn't expect anything... stunned

Email: "An invitation was sent to you by Rich Skrenta to try a new search engine developed by blekko." Nice

Just got my blekko account...i like.

Repost! #blekko rocks, Google killer. I've seen Chacha, Mahalo, Quintura, even Bing redesign, so I totally didn't expect anything... stunned

maybe... #blekko could be a first collective intelligence search engine. if success, it will be a google killer. over the PageRank :-)

ooh no #bing versus @blekko what to do? Google is no more search engine of choice - I'll sleep on it

Figuring this @blekko thing out. Slash tags seem pretty awesome

@blekko I'd also love to see API slashtags for /facebook, /google, /posterous, /tumblr, /wordpress and /identica or /statusnet.

@blekko looks very interesting, great done guys! Now you have one more user ;-)

Blekko.com - Why another search engine? Because this one is unique.: http://wp.me/pOEb4-2B

i got my #blekko beta invite. this is awesome. my new search engine of choice.

@ScepticGeek You are missing the commercial aspect of blekko! There is need for YBoss alternative - Bing's index is worse than blekkos!

I like blekko.com. Start wondering how search engines could even exist without #slashtags

Thumbs up to Blekko. Community driven Slashtags are a very cool twist on search. Very useful. Congrats! http://blekko.com/

@blekko :) Thanks for the invitation - it´s more revolutionary as i heared about.

Playing around with #blekko and finding it really cool.

The new @blekko search engine is awesome! Good job!

Testing Blekko and this is not bad, not bad at all. It actually has way more features than any other search engine.

playing with blekko tonight, I like the search results i'm getting

surprised: @blekko is delivering significantly better results than google...

Trying @blekko and its fantastic! Can conceive of some cool /slashtag tools using set operators: /politics - (/conservative + /liberal)

Just tried @blekko search beta and with out doubt its impressive ....they are sure to change the future of searching the web

Hot Startup #3 this week is @blekko. Full web search engine that provides query refinement features called "Slashtags" http://bit.ly/aSizkO

Wow, blekko made my life happier. http://blekko.com/

Hey @blekko really like what your doing with search!

@blekko I see slashtags for /alcohol, /beer, /tea and /wine. I'd love to see a built-in /coffee as well.

My use of google is down ~75% after receiving a beta invite to Blekko and my productivity is up easily as much. Hot damn. #SlashTagsFTW

Content.mills beware! #blekko lets me blacklist domains. It could have been you Google... do you remember what happened to MS round '95?

@AndrewGirdwood's review of new search engine Blekko - "modern and up to date" http://bit.ly/9khrcR

@calebhicks Blekko is definitely a more intelligent way to search. Have you used it extensively yet?

got beta access to @blekko http://blekko.com using it today instead of Google, good experience up until now

10-second impression of @blekko: nerdy. very, very nerdy.

Playing around witk @blekko. Really interesting new approach to search, and some great stuff for SEO purposes

Anybody want a beta invite to use an awesome new search engine @blekko? Really impressive work they are doing with slashtags and analytics.

The more I play with blekko the more I really like it. I think I am going to try and go blekko for a week

Testing out Blekko search now. Definitely some nice points in terms of the filters. Check out the feature-set here: http://selnd.com/dpFBdW

Video: A new kind of socially-biased search engine: @Blekko youtube.com/watch?v=tlESXi… (I love this innovative new search engine, here's why).

Had @blekko for 2 mins, incredibly powerful. UI leaves a lot to be desired. Hope it's improved, can see this becoming my default.

@blekko is surprising. I need to play more with slashtags but it seems a little more social than google

trying out #blekko . it's been very fast and accurate, so far... love the #slashtags feature too :)

#blekko is my default search engine now. It didn't work for some specific long tail very well, but slash tags will make up for it massively.

Blekko is a stealth search engine which aims to change the search game by being fairly transparent with ranking data. S.. http://dld.bz/ts5a

Really intrigued at how simply and competently @blekko improved searching the web for me.

Very impressed with @blekko -- SEO and Analytic features beat commercial offerings, and searching emphasises fun & discovery

@blekko OK, I'm hooked! I asked for a /coffee slashtag, and here it is. It even searches @counter_culture @starbucks & @coffeegeek

every time I go to @blekko I started humming a Peter Gabriel song.

The time is right for a search solution like Blekko. They let me filter out Demand Media? They are my new best friends. http://bit.ly/dtqyvV

@blekko social search engine looks great, thx for the invitation #blekko this will grow fast I guess

Just got a nice thank you email from @blekko for raising a bug. No one have ever thanked me for raising a bug before..

I'm liking @blekko search more and more every time I use it. Just wish they would fix a few bugs.

Just created a /github slashtag for Blekko, works really well. Surprised there wasn't one already shared.

@staticnrg Well, it tries. I am newly in love with @Blekko #hcsm

Got my @blekko invite. Interesting concept! This could actually be usable.

#blekko is great for lists, especially tracking your competitors - my defintion - #blekko is a new search engine with analytics

Alright, my twitter has been buggy for days, but all is right again..My Blekko invite hath arrived. Time to slash for new facts. TY #BLEKKO

Most new search engines fail badly. @blekko is preparing to defy the odds: http://bit.ly/bLpg6V

Ow. 3am. @blekko ate my sleep cycle. But now I can search for Scala without typefaces, stairs, sign makers, and fonts polluting the results.

Wow - @blekko is painfully cool.

ha ha, somebody has broke the #google here so everybody's blocked, but since I switched to #blekko I don't really care :)

I like @blekko because it's not just a copy of Google - it's something new! I'm /happy /to /be /a /beta /tester #blekko

@blekko Finally an actual innovation in web search! And, a team that can actually implement it ... can I have an invite?! #blekko

@gogoeskimo Think of /slashtags as blekko's page rank. Much more effective at filtering noise since they originate from users. $0.02

@blekko Must say you are doing great with local search for the UK, I wasn't expecting that this early on.

Blekko is a full web search engine that differentiates itself by offering access to data and algorithms - http://blekko.com/ #search #Blekko

checking out blekko. i like their puppet.

I think @blekko could be great if you could edit other people's slashtags. (Tag owner would approve edits.)

Search results I'm getting from Blekko are better than Google and Bing. Bravo!

I think the /noporn blekko slashtag is the best thing since sliced bananas.

@blekko Thanks for the invite, really interesting to see what you are doing with search. I like the SEO data.

The slashtag feature and the transparency of new search engine Blekko are pretty nifty

Blog - The Upside-Down Logic of Taking on Google at Search - New search engine Blekko has opened in beta--is it diff... http://ow.ly/18r0tK

@parislemon you, my friend, should use @blekko for the site removal feature alone let me know if you want an invite about

Playing with @blekko, I like it!

@Blekko rocks! (got my invite) RT @scobleizer Video: New kind of socially-biased arch engine: @Blekko

Getting in on this @blekko love in, it's pretty darn impressive.

Twenty minutes using @blekko and I'm already loving it. Amazing search experience.

@blekko thanks for the invite. Surprised there wasn't a /wikipedia slash yet, o/wise cool service, not sold on it yet but fast + useful.

So true! RT @blekko: RT @spladow: . @blekko has the best default avatars. http://brizzly.com/pic/37SI

blekko is not half bad at all.

Thanks @blekko for the invite - already have ideas for a couple of slashtags now to read up on how to make them. :-)

Just identified a whole network using @blekko pretty powerful stuff

been having a good play with new search engine @blekko this week and am loving the #seo #slashtag verrrrrrry useful!

New Search Engine Blekko Takes Vertical Search to a New Level http://bit.ly/cKq9gy | #verticalsearch

RobBruceMcNair: @mcbay watch this vid with @blekko and @scobleizer especially 16 mins in for real-time link http://url4.eu/73ihJ

Great start to the day, got a @blekko invite first thing in the morning, 2 KM run and 2 KM walk.

Trying #blekko and it looks really interesting. I like the ease use of /tag.

@kristy hehe, meantime I'll just tease you w/ snippets of how awesome it is ;) #blekko

EntrepreneurNB - Anybody want a beta invite to use an awesome new search engine @blekko? Really impressive work they are doing with slashtags and analytics.

Going to try to use @blekko as my main search engine now. We'll see how this goes

@blekko. Love it. Sadly I make a living from Google. But I love it. Can I keep it anyway?

Just playing around with @blekko beta. Amazing concept, and it works really well already. The /rank slash is incredible.

September 14, 2010

Crowdsourcing search relevancy


How on earth do you try to disrupt the search space?

Search requires not only a big software system, but also a massive set of relevance data to help the algorithms make sense of the billions of pages on the web.

Bing and Google have hundreds of contractors that use web tools to refine this relevance data - classifying porn, spam, domain parks, ecommerce sites, fake 404's, markov-spam, official sites, and so on.

As a 20-person startup, we asked ourselves how blekko could assemble this essential data. Hire contractors? Use Mechanical Turk? Elance?

But - of course! - we know a much better way.... A way you can get orders of magnitude greater participation, while at the same time being very open about the process.

Let the public in.

We realized we could make web tools that let users sign up and help make the search engine better. If we opened up the process, we could not only get orders of magnitude more people involved than we could ever hope to employ, we could also create an open, accountable process around the search engine relevance data.

Not everyone has to participate for the model to work - most people don't edit Wikipedia, yet we have a vast encyclopedia which long ago dwarfed the closed Britannica.

But a small fraction of the web audience that does get involved can help make the search experience better for everyone else.

We're starting by letting users define their own vertical search experiences, using a feature we call slashtags. Slashtags let all of the vertical engines that people define on blekko live within the same search box. They also let you do a search and quickly pivot from one vertical to another.

I was looking for 2% cash back credit card. 1% cards are pretty common, but 2% are harder to track down. [cash back credit card] is a trainwreck of a spammed results any engine. So I made a blekko /money tag with the top 100 personal finance bloggers that I got from Kiplingers. Bingo, [cash back credit card /money] and I have great results.

Being able to go into a spammy category like health, personal finance, hotels or even lyrics and search just the best sites immediately uplevels the results. Trusted sources with no spam.

And our users are making tags we would never have thought of. One of our users created a /glutenfree tag, so you can search [chicken soup /glutenfree]. Another created a slashtag for user experience design sites, so now we have a great /ux tag.

We have a vision of curated algorithmic search that brings quality back to the web at scale, and involves the public to get there.

We're just getting started though, so stay tuned.

Cool searches which show off features:

cure for headaches
pregnancy tips
big island resorts
industrial design colleges
pan fried noodles
obama /date
global warming /conservative
bioinformatics /people
blekko /links
blekko /links /date
blekko /links /date /rss
techcrunch /seo
om malik /rank
techcrunch /seo

Press:

New York Times: A New Search Engine, Where Less Is More

Wall Street Journal: Start-Up Aims at Google: Blekko.com Taps Users to Narrow Results, Avoid Spam Sites

Search Engine Land: Blekko, The “Slashtag” Search Engine, Goes Live

September 21, 2010

Get a cool blekko slashtag man (or woman) tee shirt

When we started blekko, I was fortunate to find myself working with a really great technical team. I'd worked with most of these folks before at various valley companies over the years and knew that they were killer engineers. We were pretty confident that we had the technical chops to build a new search engine from scratch. We also had a bunch of ideas about a differentiated search experience that could be built...

But we had absolutely no in-house artistic talent. It's a running joke around our office that we're really good at building ugly web sites.

I'm envious of startups that are fortunate enough to have a really talented designer in their core team. Unfortunately that just wasn't us. So when we were hunting around for some imagery to go with our brand, we turned to 99designs.

Our product director had the idea that slashtags turn our users into superusers, since slashtags let them kill spam with a single click, quickly pivot through numerous verticals, and x-ray valuable seo ranking data.

But the imagery really got fleshed out during our design competition. We wanted something cool we could put on a tee shirt, beyond the simple 'blekko' wordmark.

Slashtag Man came back from the design competition and everybody loved him. After we made him the default avatar on the site, some of our beta users tweeted that they weren't going to upload their own pic because they liked slashtag man so much.

We had the designers make a Slashtag Girl so we could put her on the back of the women's tees we ordered.

The imagery here worked perfectly for what we were trying to do - empowering regular users to turn into super-users when they search.

To help us celebrate our new super-hero identity, we’ve got 100 t-shirts to give away. If you want one, just send a note to shirt@blekko.com, include your size, let us know if you prefer a women's tee, and of course your mailing address and we'll send you a tee shirt.

We'll also be giving away tees at our booth at upcoming shows - TechCrunch Disrupt, SMX East, PubCon and Defrag. If you're at one of these shows, please stop by and chat and we'll give you a tee if we haven't run out.

Slash the web!

September 22, 2010

The magic of tee shirts and how we easily mail them anywhere - even internationally

I had an idea at blekko that I wanted to give away a bunch of tee shirts as a marketing promo and a reward for our beta users. People love tee shirts and companies seem to be really stingy with them at trade shows these days. Instead you get a cheap pen or a squeeze ball.

Companies pay thousands of dollars for an insert in the free bag you get at registration, or a banner on the wall, or to sponsor the cocktail reception.

I think most of that stuff is worthless.

For the cost of a banner on the wall at a big show you can make 500 or 1000 tee shirts.

Instead of a logo on the wall that nobody even notices, you can have hundreds of cool industry people wearing your logo a couple of times a month. All day at work! And people love getting the shirts.

When I told my team I also wanted to mail a bunch of shirts to our users they initially freaked out. Just how do you do that efficiently? Fortunately our marketing director Stephen had already solved this problem.

He is a passionate motorcyclist and commutes to work every day on his BMW R1200GS. He actually travels about 20,000 miles a year on his bike. Two years ago he started a side business selling motorcycle accessories.

So he quickly set blekko up with the same shipping solution that he had built for his company.

Within a few days we had a Dymo LabelWriter 4XL along with rolls of Dymo labels. We subscribed to Endicia for Mac. Bubble mailers came locally from RoyalMailers.com located in Emeryville, CA. Within minutes we were printing our own USPS shipping labels with integrated stamps.

We can also easily print international shipping labels as well with the PS-2976 customs form built right in. The great thing about Endicia's service is that it includes the round postmaster stamp on each label, so you can drop international shipments right into a mailbox without having to go to the post office for inspection.

This stuff is really slick... With this setup our community manager Cheralyn was able to package and mail a huge stack of tee shirts in just a couple of hours.

If this had been done by hand it would have taken a couple of days.

Here are some of the international requests we got:

Also I have only little hope that you will ship one of this gorgeous shirts to Germany. PLEASE DO!

Not sure if you ship to Canada?

I'd wear it at all the barcamps & at work (I am a webdesigner)

Of course we in Austria - Europa want to help spread your super-hero identity!!!

Don't know do you ship in Croatia, but it would be really great to wear one on my job :) i would sure be unique :)

I'd love an awesome t-shirt please please please - I'm ready to slash the web. I doubt you will send one to Germany, though, even if it would be very shrewd international marketing …

Non-US folks are blown away when they find we actually will mail a shirt to them.

September 25, 2010

team blekko at techcrunch disrupt hackathon

Note other key tools in addition to the macbooks - diet dr. pepper and the bottle of scotch in the middle of the table.

About September 2010

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