Techcrunch's Erick Schonfeld covered Vancouver search engine startup Worio today and he likes what he sees with their new Facebook Connect integration.
Worio is creating a new category of personalized Web search: discovery. Its engine works alongside traditional search engines to deliver individually tailored results so users can discover what they’ve been missing. The fundamental technology behind Worio is a semantic tagging system that analyzes the content of indexed web pages and categorizes them automatically based on what it can glean about the meaning of the text.
Now, with the Facebook Connect implementation, which just went live a few minutes ago, Worio can tap into your profile, your friends, and your feed to further personalize search results. Worio actually indexes your profile and feed. Any time somebody shares a link on your feed, the entire page gets analyzed and tagged by Worio, and added to its index (which currently is made up of about 100 million pages, culled down from one billion found by its crawler). Worio is less concerned with quantity than quality, as far as its index is concerned, and adding links recommended by friends is a really good filter for quality links.
Once you sign into Worio via Facebook Connect, it takes a few minutes to index your profile. From then on, any search you do will be influenced by your profile, links your friends share on Facebook, and the semantic tags that Worio associates with you and your friends. For instance, when I search for “restaurants,” Worio figures out that I live in New York and peppers some results specific to New York City in my discovery feed results even though I didn’t put “New York” in the search box.
Yaletown-based Worio was founded by UBC students and has been funded to date by angel investors as well as grants from Canada’s National Research Council and PRECARN. Worio has two provisional patents and one pending for its technology.