Ask.com, founded by Dr. Apostolos Gerasoulis, performs 13 million searches per day, according to searchenginewatch.com. “Making man’s ritual of searching the web a more enlightened one,” stated one of Ask.com’s commercial.
Though Ask.com is nowhere near Google.com’s 91 million searches per day, “It is definitely one of the major players. It’s in the top 5, but Google.com just dominates. I think it’s the number one search engine used,” Anne Schwelm, coordinator of information access and user services, said.
“I’m pretty sure Ask.com was one of the first Meta search engines,” Schwelm said. Schwelm also said that Ask.com was the first Meta search engine she used, but now she uses iboogie.com.
“Man made an important discovery by using tools on Ask.com like smart answers for shortcuts, or related searches to expand or narrow and binoculars to preview the sites,” according to a commercial posted on Ask.com.
Ask.com provides its users with an easy way to find the information they are looking for, preview a site’s layout before clicking and see related searches for ideas to either narrow or increase those possibilities.
“The website offered access to a variety of information, and in my personal opinion, it usually led me to what I needed to know about 98 percent of the time. Even now I still use it and will continue to do so,” Erin Rafferty, a freshman business administration major, said.
“I didn’t like it very much. I think google.com is a lot better,” Kayla Moran, a sophomore education and elementary education major, said.
“I wouldn’t use Ask.com for an academic paper,” said Schwelm, “but I’ve used it for personal reasons like how to keep deer away from my Hosta plants.”
Schwelm also talked about how Google.com and Ask.com are both used for convenience and that they might be good to get ideas or starting points towards better academic sources. “I would go to the Library before going to Ask.com for a scholarly source,” Schwelm said.
Out of all the searches within the United States, Ask.com is used for 3.3 percent of those searches, according to a survey taken in July 2006, on searchenginewatch.com.
That same survey showed that Google.com is used for 60.2 percent of searches, Yahoo.com is used for 22.5 percent and MSN.com is used for 11.8 percent.
“Google is not better, it’s just more popular,” stated an Ask.com commercial.
During a few commercials promoting Ask.com, Gerasoulis explained it this way, “Search engines understand text. Ask.com understands concepts.” He also stated that “Ask.com is the only agent who uses groups and collectiveness to find information.”