John Battelle writes in a recent post, “the search space is heating up again, as social search takes center stage due to the MySpace and Facebook incursions on Google’s stranglehold”. The Social Graph has been dominating tech discussions ever since Brad Fitzpatrick got the OpenSocial ball rolling back in August. Tim Berners-Lee now wonders whether we’ll move from “www” to “ggg” — Giant Global Graph — as we move toward the semantic web.
We wonder how effective leveraging the Social Graph for search results will really be. When you look at your contact list and think about the people and activity associated with it (emails, IMs, phone calls, letters) does it seem like something that might help crystallize search relevance? It’s interesting to think about how social networks might leverage personal profile data and relationships to enhance search and ad targeting (the true primary interest), but there will certainly be a lot of chaff mixed in with the wheat, as far as the data is concerned.
Collarity definitely focuses on relationships, but they are very different from the explicit associations defined in your contact list or your facebook page. Collarity focuses more on connections related to attention and knowledge — less on communication or socializing. These are the community-based implicit relationships between people, content, and advertising. We believe behavioral relevance distilled from anonymous user activity is the key to better search, discovery, and ad targeting for our publisher customers.