I recently got invited to beta test Sphere, a new RSS/Blog search engine that everyone’s been talking about [but only some have actually used it, Sphere is in an invite-only phase]. What drags me to Sphere first of all, and I have to say this, is its name. As a CEO, how happy would you be with such a name?
pronounced ‘sfir, n. – an area or range over or within which someone or something acts, exists, or has influence or significance.
Anyway, moving aside from the name, I also like the simplicity of the search results. Sphere offers unique results. When I compared it with Feedster and Technorati, what I saw was a different search engine. They had the most recent results — but only Sphere had the actual interchangeable option to switch between relevancy and time [I know Feedster does this but Sphere actually went into it.]
Sphere’s best feature, I found, was its "profile". Every blog it indexes has a profile and I think it offers accurate data — for whatever it offers.
Of course, Sphere — as I said — also has its "to improve" sides like all betas, which I have suggested to the team. I think in today’s world simplicity is not the only key to success, but also a bit of variety in features, etc. While the results and relevancy may be great, I think it needs more features — even simple things like a blog finder or some integration between Flickr and/or del.icio.us would do great. Overall, I do think it’s a product watch for when it comes out of beta. You might be hearing more of Sphere soon on this blog.