ActuallyHard, the Wave-Based Search “Engine”

October 15, 2009

My Startup partner and I have been developing a search engine based on Wave to answer actually difficult (ie. couldn’t find it on Google or answer it myself) questions.

This is how the app works. You have been searching for an answer to a problem that you are having. You’ve gone to Google and even resorted to secondary search engines and clicking through to the second and third results page. It’s obvious that either you are searching incorrectly (ie. you don’t know the proper words) or this question has not been addressed by anyone before hand.

You go to the ActuallyHard page and type in your search.

Very Simple Search Page

Very Simple Search Page

This search goes to an engine which judges whether it knows which wave to send this query to. If the engine is not confident, it sends the query to a Wave of people who enjoy connecting queries with the proper solution space. If this Wave Group does not have a route for the query in the first ten minutes, it pushes it out to Mechanical Turk.

Once the query has traveled to a solution space you get an email to that effect.

The query has arrived in the solution space. For example, you made a query about diagnosing a health issue. The people in the Healthcare Wave have a bot that accepts queries from ActuallyHard. The Wave has a set of tools that bring in GoogleHealth information and access to resources that you don’t normally use. They solve your query and push it back through a bot.

People in a Wave Processing Info

People in a Wave Processing Info

The question is solved by the more informed group, pushed back to ActuallyHard, and then pushed to you. With each search loop completed,  the ActuallyHard judgment engine increases its understanding of how to route queries. In addition, our site may have routed your question to multiple Waves, so that you can get back multiple results.

ActuallyHard Search Results

ActuallyHard Search Results

Now the reality is that I have only crafted this as a real product in order to get your attention. I’m not actually working on this. If you do want to talk about the concept, please contact me at primevector /at/ gmail *dot* com. Or please leave a comment.

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One Response to “ActuallyHard, the Wave-Based Search “Engine””

  1. Matt Perez Says:

    Oh, this would be great. What am I saying, this *will be* great. Really clever how it combines Google Wave with Crowdsourcing seamlessly.

    This is right up O’Reilly’s Web Squared (sic) alley.


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