Contextual Search Platform Atlas Is Ivy Softworks’ First Spinoff
Ivy Softworks — a so-referred to as “innovation studio” based by Napster’s Jordan Ritter in Seattle — is taking the wraps off its first merchandise at this time. It’s launching a contextual info search platform referred to as Atlas; and it’s additionally unveiling Recall, the primary app for the Atlas platform. The launch marks Ivy Softworks’ lengthy-anticipated departure from stealth mode.
Atlas’ eponymous product is a customized platform that data the knowledge you entry throughout units and contextualizes it for later use. Atlas is at present in a personal beta, and might be out there to the general public in March of subsequent yr. Whereas the preliminary public launch can be free to make use of, the corporate has longer-time period plans of shifting to a subscription mannequin.
Ritter says his imaginative and prescient for the product first happened properly earlier than he based Ivy Softworks.
“We’re in a world the place a thousand folders – a 50 yr-previous metaphor – doesn’t actually apply anymore,” he stated, emphasizing his frustration on the lack of inter-system communication in an more and more gadget-centric world. “All of those options to unravel the truth of us shifting between units with our knowledge are incomplete.”
Atlas’ final objective is to be a layer between units that permits for seamless switch of data. It’s not making an attempt to be an working system – as an alternative, Ritter and workforce are specializing in creating an info platform, agnostic to the underlying kernel.
Atlas’ group has spent vital quantities of effort on a seamless consumer interface for the purposes that run on prime of the platform, and it exhibits.
Because the identify suggests, Recall leverages Atlas’ deep understanding of the knowledge customers entry and allows non-conventional search. As Ritter defined, Recall helps to unravel a standard drawback – with the ability to keep in mind studying one thing a few topic, however not clearly sufficient to seek for the knowledge efficiently.
Recall allows you to rediscover info that you simply beforehand solely had a foggy recollection of, one thing that present instruments available on the market wrestle with. Whereas Apple, Google, Microsoft, and different main gamers have vital efforts for contextualized search, no search merchandise by incumbent gamers can do what Recall does for this use case. Nevertheless, it stays to be seen how giant platforms will take Atlas’ muscling in on their turf – for Atlas to hope to succeed, it wants full cooperation from platform and app makers.
That is the place Recall’s consumer interface shines. Looking for a check e-mail about logistics for shifting to Ballard brings up a thumbnail of related emails, paperwork, and messages throughout units. Textual content messages, emails, and net searches all popped up in the identical place, and clicking on an e mail introduced up subsequent to it an inventory of comparable messages ranked by contextual relevance, time proximity, and different elements.
Recall’s comparatively humble use case belies the scope of the Atlas platform, although. TechCrunch received an unique peek on the group’s subsequent launch for the platform, referred to as Foresight. Once more because the identify suggests, Foresight finds new items of data related to what’s being labored on. When Foresight is enabled, each window onscreen has a bar sidecar-ed to the left aspect, with an inventory of comparable gadgets and items of data as what the window accommodates. Once we opened an e-mail (once more about shifting to Seattle), Foresight populated the sidebar with an inventory of space suggestions, housing costs, evaluations, and map-based mostly assessments. It’s straightforward to see how helpful this might be if the system works in actual-time in addition to it did within the demo.
As nice because the underlying know-how is and as helpful because the purposes on the platform are, although, the very nature of Atlas brings up the normal worries about info privateness. In a world the place our management over our personal knowledge grows increasingly tenuous, there’s something worrying about having a software program like Atlas sitting on our computer systems, all the time listening, all the time watching. It’s straightforward to think about an prevalence the place the software program data your checking account info once you make a deposit or pay a bank card invoice.
With reference to safety, Ritter defined the knowledge Atlas captures is encrypted in relaxation and in movement, however not finish-to-finish. The product’s dealing with of copyrighted and different trademarked content material can also be unknown — an fascinating element, given Ritter’s Napster heritage. In any case, it’s a query that may must be addressed if Atlas catches on.
Ivy Softworks has not disclosed any funding info.