Ask And Receive - Netted
Article • November 11, 2009

Ask And Receive

Got Questions? Tap Your Social Networks To Get Relevant Answers

While search engines are great at harnessing the wisdom of crowds, those crowds can be a little unwise (and random) for certain queries.

Enter Aardvark, a handy service that finds answers to questions via your social networks (your Facebook friends, your friends’ FB friends, your Twitter followers) and others who have opted into the Aardvark system.

The advantage: you’re tapping a trusted knowledge base (not the general population) without annoying every person you’ve ever met with an e-mail.

Aardvark uses a sophisticated set of parameters to narrow the search, asking only those most likely to have the right answer, based on their interests, geography and other aspects of their profile.

We asked it where we could find an H1N1 shot in New York City and within ten minutes we were IMed a half-dozen useful answers from people we were somehow connected to.

Aardvark even allowed us to IM directly with the answer providers to ask follow-up questions.

Think of it as your own virtual brain trust.