Search with others, with Microsoft’s new plug-in
Due to Microsoft’s never ending quest for a larger share of the search market, they have been coming up with quite a few new ideas lately.
The latest is a plug-in for Internet Explorer 7, called SearchTogether, which allows users to search the web with other users. The plug-in lets people join a kind of chat room, which groups people searching for the same results. The plug-in allows for users to chat, make notes on specific results, give ratings and leave recommendations. The plug-in also allows for members to return to a previous session to retrieve comments and so forth.
The idea behind this plug-in is to take individual personalisation techniques for customising search results and applying it to a group. Once this is done, they can either exploit similarities between the users and bubble the results together or the differences of each user and making the search results more varied.
Google to has been making use or rather playing around with search personalisation, but Microsoft has been the first thus far to apply it to a group search architecture.
Microsoft has released a video explaining this new plug-in. You can take a look at it here.