A new website, a fusion between a search engine and a social network, is launched today under the name Eurekster. It has the financial backing of NBC, features search results provided by AllTheWeb and sponsored results by Overture, the Yahoo! subsidiary, and enables members of the social network RealContacts to share search results, personalize them and in fact influence them in how they rank the search results.

In explaining how Eurekster works, the site differentiates the main search result ranking algorithms:

  • keywords and metatags define the relevancy of results — as implemented by AltaVista and InfoSeek
  • editors, professional or volunteer, decide which results are more relevant — as implemented by Yahoo, LookSmart, Open Directory
  • webmasters manipulate the ranking of pages by providing incoming and outgoing links to sites of interest — as implemented by Google and Teoma (owned by AskJeeves)
  • what you and your friends think — as implemented by Eurekster