Monday, January 19, 2009

Hello from the Kelpp team

Welcome to our blog! In this first post, we wanted to explain a bit about the thinking behind Kelpp and how it works.

Why we built Kelpp

Despite the power of today's search engines, we noticed that certain types of information are still hard to find. Kelpp was built to remedy this deficiency.

Suppose you are new in town and need to find a plumber to fix that leaky faucet; or maybe you are traveling to Singapore and want to find a good yoga studio. Or perhaps you are simply looking for a place that makes awesome blueberry pancakesYou could use traditional review sites and choose a place with positive ratings and comments. 


But wouldn't you feel more comfortable if you got a recommendation from a friend or acquaintance whose opinion you trusted? We realized that many of our own decisions on where to find things are based on recommendations from people we know and trust. We thought that a service that enables people to query one of their best resources for information - their friends - would be valuable. 


A further limitation of many review sites is that they organize information based on a fixed set of categories. Suppose you are looking for a restaurant that serves chicken donburi - which not every Japanese restaurant serves. Or suppose you hired ahandyman who is a superb electrician but a mediocre carpenter, and had him work on your kitchen cabinets with poor results. With Kelpp we wanted to make it possible to capture these important distinctions and share them with your friends and others.


In short, we built Kelpp to be the search engine for your social circle that answers"where can I find?" for absolutely anything.


How does Kelpp work?


Our goal is to make Kelpp super-easy to use. To start with, we realized that Kelpp should integrate with the social networks you already use today. This means no annoying sign-up process and needing to invite your friends to join a new service - we work seamlessly with Facebook today, and plan to support more networks in the future.


To find recommendations, just search for whatever it is you want - for example, you can search for something as specific as "family friendly Japanese restaurant". If there are existing reviews, we show them to you and highlight any reviews from your friends. If there aren't any exact matches, we'll show you related ones - for example, there might be recommendations for "family friendly Italian restaurant".


At any time, you can ask you friends for recommendations. We automatically post your request to your Facebook profile. When your friends respond, Kelpp tracks their recommendations and lets you know. If you find a place you want to recommend to your friends, Kelpp makes it simple to do so.


The Kelpp community and you


We value and respect your privacy. Kelpp won't ask for or keep any information, besides the reviews you write and requests you make to friends. And you won't get asingle junk mail from us. Kelpp is collaboratively built and managed by you and the Kelpp community. With your help, we can build a great collection of recommendations on where to find anything imaginable. No matter what city, state, or country you call home: precise and trustworthy recommendations is our objective.

Kelpp is currently in alpha. This means there may be a few issues here and there, but hopefully no major bugs. We invite you to try out the service. We value your opinion and would love to hear your feedback - you can either fill out this form or send us mail at kelppme@gmail.com.

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