Mahalo search engine

The Financial Times (subcription required) of yesterday reports on a new search engine “with the human touch, the latest of a series of innovations to help users cope with the overwhelming amount of information, images and video available on the web”. According to the founder of the new search engine, Jason Calacanis who is being backed by VC heavyweight Sequoia Capital, “80 to 90 per cent of the information on the web is spam, and Google results are filled with search slime-buckets inserting themselves in the process”. Calacanis says “people are building websites to appeal not to humans but machines [that select search results”. Mahalo intends using humans as is done in Wikipedia. Essentially, Mahalo, which apparently means “thank you” in Hawaiian, editorializes the output of search queries. Apparently News Corporation and CBS are also involved in funding Mahalo and likely will funnel queries to its search engine. Its wikipedia, web 2.0 format could prove to be interesting to a number of industries, including hotels, looking to refine their appeal on the web.

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Vijay Dandapani

Co-founder and president of a New York based hotel company for 24 years. Grew the firm to five hotels in Manhattan and also developed a greenfield project at MacArthur airport, New York. Speaker at numerous prestigious forums including Economy Hotels World Asia, Lodging Conference, NYU, Columbia University Real Estate Roundtable, Baruch College's Zicklin School and ALIS. President and ceo of New York City Hotel Association since January 2017.