Collecta.com is a real-time search engine for the social web. The search engine returns real-time results for a search string from blogs (Blogger, Wordpress and others), articles, news stories, Twittr, Facebook, Flickr, YouTube and other social networking sites. Search results can be filtered by Stories (searches blogs, articles, etc.), Comments (searches comments placed on blogs, news stories, etc.), Updates (Twittr, etc.), Photos and Videos.
Results are returned in a real-time list in the center of the page that updates continuously as long as the search results are displayed. The list contains the title of the article, post, comment, photo, video, etc. Clicking on one of the results brings up a preview of the original post, article, photo or video in the right-hand pane of the page. The summary provides a link to the original article, post, update, etc. The summary also displays a list of icons for sharing the result on the major social networking sites.
Collecta.com was founded by Jack Moffitt and Brian Zisk in November 2008. Gerry Campbell is currently CEO, Jack Moffitt is CTO and Patrick Mahoney is COO. Collecta was shut down in January 2011. The team moved on to new projects including Whobet.com.
Competition to Collecta.com comes from sites such as Scoopler, Twittr and Topsy. Scoopler, like Collecta, searches a variety of social networking sites in real-time. Twittr search searches just the Twittr update stream. Topsy also only searches the Twittr update stream. Scoopler returns results in a different format, with the real-time results shown in the center of the page, the most popular results shown in the right-hand pane, and the current most popular searches in all categories, in other words what is “hot” right now, shown in the left-hand pane.
The home page is dominated by a search bar, and the results pages are free of unnecessary clutter. Searches conducted on the site start returning real-time search results in about 10 seconds. Scoopler, which performs a similar search to Collecta, is faster – it starts returning real-time results in a matter of a few seconds.
There is no registration offered to the Collecta.com site. Users simply type a search string in the search box to use the site.
There is no premium membership to the site offered. There is no advertising displayed on the Collecta site.
The Collecta.com site is recommended to anyone who wants the latest possible information concerning a given topic. The results are extremely current, showing articles, posts, updates and photos posted as quickly as a few seconds ago, with a large number of results for most topics in the last few minutes. On the other hand, the results are not nearly as targeted as search results from the major search engines. For example, a search for “digital camera” will show a large number of recently posted photos, regardless of subject. Photos can be filtered out, however, which transforms the list into a much more relevant list of results.