Yesterday was the launch of our pet project 99Tribes. 99Tribes is a discovery engine for people on Twitter.
Some background first.
Search vs Discovery
There is a big debate about what’s the big deal about discovery when we have search engines that do the job.Here is a quick explanation. We always search within the circle of of our awareness. If we are not aware of something, it’s hard to type those in the search boxes. Try it – try to search for something that you are not aware of. If it feels odd, it is!
However, there may be “gems” present outside of our circle of awareness but within the “circle of possibility” – that’s the discovery zone. That’s where 99Tribes thrives – finding people that you might not have found otherwise. And, if these people share multiple interests with you, then we have the making of the ultimate tribe on Twitter.
Making of an ultimate tribe
We bond with people that share our interests. A club or an association is formed just by matching one interest that people share. A movie club may bring people together that share movies as their passion. A book club may bring together people that love books. A bicycling club may bring together people that like to go cycling. However, some people that love movies may also love to read and also go on cycling. It’s hard to create a movie-book-bicycling club in a town.
But on Twitter, you can create a tribe however you want – in fact, you can do that without even asking people to join. How? If you can find people that match all these interests, you can follow them and then start a conversation. Until they follow back, it will be sort of one-sided but soon people will follow back and you then create an ultimate tribe.
The more matches you have with your interests, the stronger the bond.
At the outset, 99Tribes looks like “another” twitter people directory. There are many out there and we really don’t need another one.
The easiest way to see the difference is to experience it.
You can start by typing whatever you are interested in – in the search box.
The search results page will display a set of users that match that interest. Until this time, the system behaves like any other search engine. Right on that search results page, you will notice that there are set of dynamic filters that show up on the left column. Dynamic is the keyword here. These keywords are built per search – and they are arranged in descending order of volume. Meaning the first filter on the column will have more matches than the filter down below.
You can click on one of the filters and drill down deeper to find people that match multiple interests. Every time, you click on a filter, the filter list gets updated to reflect the new search results. You can keep drilling down deeper until you run out of all filters.
You can experience the power of “discovery” with every search with the dynamic filters.
99Tribes is brought to you by ActiveGarage and powered by Rawsugar (some of you might remember the name) that has three patents on discovery. We are excited about it and hope you will be excited too.
Go ahead and please try us out and better yet, if you are on Twitter add yourself and be “discoverable.”
Have a great day.