Search-centred startup Twingly peked our interest back in June when it announced a mysterious new product called ‘Project Shinobi’. Details were thin on the ground back then. Now we’ve had a chat with the Swedish company’s CEO Martin Källström to try to squeeze a few more details out of him ahead of Project Shinobi’s launch.
Two months ago, the initial description of Twingly’s new product promised that it would “Provide a more social, more relevant and more realtime experience” for a mainstream audience. Källström remains tight-lipped as to exactly how it will work but he did let slip some new details:
- It’s a search product. This isn’t just a new way of presenting search results, Källström describes it as an evolutionary approach to search. It will provide a social dimension to searching, making it a collaborative user experience.
- It’s realtime and a “paradigm shift” in search.
- Källström says Twitter has shown the way ahead for social search but it’s still too crude. Project Shinobi will supposedly refine this process, building upon the startup’s existing Search tool.
- The project began in concept form 18 months ago but they only began work on it 3 months ago thanks to their heavy workload with existing clients (Twingly offers a blog trackback service for media companies).
- Twingly will be using a freemium model for the project, with free access for individuals and a paid version for business use.
- The service is in internal testing at present and will be opened up to a small group of invited users next month before its launch in October.
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It’s easy to claim you have a game-changing search tool, but the social element to Twingly’s new tool certainly sounds intriguing. Users working together to provide search results is certainly an interesting approach, especially when you consider that this product supposedly links into existing web services. Some kind of search solution that uses your social graph as a filter would make sense but how that’s implemented will be the most important factor here.
We hope to have a play with Project Shinobi nearer its launch at the Future of Web Applications conference in London on 1st October.