The search engine market isn’t exactly under-saturated nowadays. It seems that everyone and their cousin has a search engine, most of which are marginally good at best and none of which compare to Google, Yahoo!, or MSN for sheer quantity of return.
Snappyfingers, however, plans to cut into that game by aiming for a specific niche that the other engines often ignore: regular people who just have questions.
The site is still in beta, but so far shows some promise. It’s a question-and-answer search engine that has around 10 million questions in a database waiting for you to query. Most of these questions are culled from Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) pages around the Web on popular search subjects like iPhones, nature, and so forth.
Snappyfingers has also partnered with Kosmix so you can see Snappyfingers results within Kosmix searches. The greatest strength of Snappyfingers comes from their search box’s natural query, however.
The query allows you to search using âˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨â‰ˆÃ¬spokenâˆšÂ¢â€šÃ‡Â¨Â¬Ã¹ English. In other words, you type it like you’d say it, and the search engine goes from there, semantic style. Results appear on a FAQ-style page with your question’s words highlighted in each answer’s title. Short synopsis of the information on the link are given, which are often enough to get you what you needed without requiring a click-through.
The search engine has a simple interface that won’t win any design awards, but it’s straight-forward and no-frills, which appeals to a lot of us. The searches themselves are sometimes a little iffy in response, but you usually get what you’re after on the first page of results nonetheless.
The search engine definitely has a lot of potential and I expect to see Snappyfingers make some inroads into the market. The problem is that they’re got a tough row to hoe with competition like Yahoo! Answers and Ask Jeeves already controlling most of the traffic for Q&A-style queries.