Launched about a year and a half ago, Otavo is famous as the intention engine. Headquartered at Canada, the engine is loosely coupled around search results and result seekers. Founder Amanuel Tewold named it after “Organizing Text, Audio and Video” which is what Otavo seeks to do of course, but with a social twist.
The basic premise is this : You get to start a search or a quest and add links to it. You could also join in a quest. So by way of social participation and tagging, Otavo creates a database of quality links on keywords.
Its a social angle to the activity of searching but has its share of criticism. Most of online searches are done for instant results. Starting a quest and waiting for the results to come from the community does not fit in the reality of a fast paced world.
Users however get to have a reputation online for their contribution to a quest. Otavo’s approach feels like a mesh of present day services (think Yahoo Answers + Digg). The site has incorporated a lot of social features and is a good example for collaborative web searching.
The site is pretty easy to navigate and supports several nifty DHTML features. Its definitely not a competitor to any mainstream engine but for those who have the time, its a must try.