Google does a great job of matching information to your query, but by design, it is not subjective. So if you’re looking for a solid product recommendation or the perfect date spot, you’re letting a search algorithm make the decision for you.
That’s where Aardvark comes in. Aardvark isn’t your traditional search engine; it’s powered by human conversation, not keywords. When you post a question, Aardvark seeks out the right person within your network (and their extended network) to answer. It does this by tapping into your Facebook account (Facebook Connect makes a cameo again) and matching related topics and areas of interests in peoples’ profiles.
You can ask questions through your web-based Aardvark account, email, or instant messenger. The latter actually adds an Aardvak contact to your chat list and lets you message the service with your question. Depending on the nature of your query and how big your social network is, you can expect a couple of responses within 5 minutes.
Aardvark recently made its way out of private beta, and while it’s a free service, you will need to give it access to your Facebook, IM, and email accounts. We don’t see it competing head-to-head with Google or Yahoo (or the newly branded “decision search engine”, Bing), but rather, introducing a more intimate form of search.