More than a year after acquiring Bloglines, Ask (formerly Ask Jeeves) has launched its own blog search service. Instead of using a crawler to index the blogs (the system that most blog search engines utilize), Ask uses the data collected from Bloglines subscribers to identify blogs that people have subscribed to. This system greatly improves the quality of search results because there is no need to figure out whether the blog is relevant, Bloglines users have already “marked” the blogs as relevant by subscribing to their feeds. The service can also use the number of subscribers in Bloglines as an indicator of popularity and hence quality.
Once again the “binoculars” feature comes in handy. Users can preview blogs before actually visiting them, just like with Ask web search.
The end result is a great tool that will appeal to many trying to cut through the clutter of the blogosphere.