Ask Jeeves has launched a new service for visitors to its site called Web Answers for finding direct answers to search queries from the web.
Building on its range of Smart Answers, Ask Jeeves has developed a Web Answers tool to provide an intuitive response to informational queries at the top of the search results page, without requiring users to click through the links to find their results.
The Web Answers tool supposedly examines web pages in real-time looking for matches for the query. Where as Smart Answers provide structured information from selected sources and partners, Web Answers extracts information directly from unstructured content found on the open web.
The results clearly labeled with the term "Web Answer", are aimed to be relevant responses to users' simple queries.
Ask Jeeves recommends trying it with “Where is Manchester?” and as predicted you get: “Manchester is situated on the river Irwell is one of the largest cities in the North West of England, with a population of approximately 450,000”.
However ask it where Ascot is and while the search gets it right, Web Answers gives “Ascot is located at the Redding Municipal Airport in Redding, California”.
The company also announced improvements to its Desktop Search application with the ability to search through music files saved within users iTunes music library, as well as having the search option integrated at the top of Windows Open dialogue boxes, whether it be Word, Outlook, etc.