Last night it was quite an honor for all of us in the village to spend 2 hours with Kansas City CEOs from Cerner, Sprint, AMC Entertainment, UMB Bank, Black & Veatch, KC Southern, Dunn, and Burns & McDonald. As I looked over the room, I found myself struck by this rather extraordinary question – could Leap.it be a company that achieves the scale and growth of the companies that these CEOs represent?
Obviously this is an extraordinary claim/question, but one, as the founder of Leap.it, I felt was appropriate to ask publicly, because the ultimate answer has less to do with our company or product, and much more to do with you, the consumer.
Let me explain. Growing up in Russell Kansas, a town of 4,000 people helping each other was the only way for everyone to succeed. As a community we were forced to collaborate to find a way to thrive. Moving from Russell, spending time on both coasts, and then moving to Kansas City, the community I was raised with has become an important beacon in the morals I try to live by.
At Leap.it (previously Leap2) we recently released a major update to our approach to reinventing search atwww.leap.it. Leap.it is a collaborative search platform, or ‘search network’ that provides consumers to the ability save and socially share search results based on their unique perspective, and the input from their digital community.
A Perspective could be:
• “What are the best things for families to do in San Francisco?”;
• “What books do I recommend reading for those interested in increasing their energy level?”;
• “Which barbeque restaurant do the people that live in KC consider to be the best barbeque””;
• “Is New York the new Silicon Valley” Why?”
• “What hostels around world do people my age recommend going to”;
• “What are the best sites that have photos and videos of fainting goats?”
What does a Leap.it Perspective look like?
It’s simple. Go to Leap.it, do a search and browse through a set of answer cards for images, website previews, videos, tweets and news results. You can then select whichever results you feel are most relevant to the subject you are searching on and add them to an existing Perspective or create a new one. Full disclosure: creating Perspectives and contributing to them does require you to have a user account. However, accounts are quick and easy to setup and can be done via LinkedIn, Twitter or Facebook. After creating a Perspective, you can share it via your social networks and encourage others to contribute and comment.
And here’s the really powerful feature – because search is core to our technology, any searcher on Leap.it, or other search engines, has the potential to discover your ‘Perspective’ – your curated search page. And over time, as more users find and engage with your Perspective, you can become known as an expert of that particular subject! Following is an example, Perspective (in orange) contained among a set of search results.
A Perspective shown in search results
With Perspectives we’ve taken the first step toward turning search into a social network. Currently we are in the middle of the Collaborative Economy (see: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Wikipedia), and each of these networks has helped reshape the dialogue about information discovery, collaboration and participation. These networks have even proven to be effective facilitators of civil disobedience, protest, and even the overthrowing of oppressive regimes.
By leveraging the power of collaboration, does leap.it have the potential to reinvent search? Absolutely.
We believe that now is the time for all netizens to demand a new search standard. Together, we have the power to break free from the bonds of machine-based page ranking. Together we can leverage the unique perspectives, knowledge and social nature inherent in us all. We can work to shape relevance and share that relevance willfully. Together, we are the algorithm.
So back to the original question, could leap.it become the next Sprint, Cerner or AMC? The answer is up to us. Join the Algorithm. Check out www.leap.it, build your own Perspective, and share it with the world.