March 08, 2010

BackType Launches Labs, BackType Me, for Social News

BackType, the best comments search engine on the Web, which launched in 2008 and has since morphed to act as a "real-time, conversational" search engine, today announced the introduction of BackType Labs, an "in progress" look at some of their newer projects. The first to debut is a service called BackType Me, which aims to find out what content is being shared by people you follow on Twitter.

Funded by Y! Combinator, BackType has grown from its two cofounders to a team of three, and is actively looking to hire two more engineers, focused on software and search. In the last few months, the threesome has evolved the site to display news by category, such as "Technology", "Politics" or "Entertainment", and has grown closer to Twitter, displaying topics that are "Hot Right Now", much like Twitter's trending topics.

Shares from Within My Social Circle on BackType Me

Now, searching BackType displays shared items from friends as well, which feeds the BackType Me product. Search BackType for a specific term (for example, the Oscars) and if logged in, you can see which of your connections shared a specific article on Twitter. The core BackType Me service displays all content shared in your social circle, and highlights the individuals who have shared it.

BackType Me could be a quick way to scan important items shared on social sites from friends in your network, and I assume we can expect more to come from BackType Labs. The team is already hinting at something called "BT.IO", which could be yet another URL shortener or something else entirely. We'll be watching them at work in the Labs when it debuts.