- Internet & the Web
Ask Jeeves Questions & Answers
Questions and Answers
This hub is going to be a 'Questions and Answers' style article, based on many peoples lack of education about the search engine 'Ask.com'. Most people are biased towards Google because it is the largest search engine, however recently I have gained a new appreciation for the corporate image of others such as Ask and Bing. Sure, Google make their image quirky by adding Pac man video games and Christmas decorations but there is something about Ask.com which gives an alternative and almost elitist grandeur that comes with your own personal valet.
Many people mistake Jeeves for a butler style character, however he is in fact a valet and this is the name given to a 'gentlemans personal gentleman', answering a questions you may ask.
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/ell-r-brown/3730858892/
The Jeeves character has evolved over the years and even gone into 'retirement' once because the ask.com corporation wanted to try a different brand image. However even after saying he retired and was too old to work they reintroduced him recently with a more 3D style illustration which even blinks as opposed to the 2D sketch.
The UK version of www.ask.com is called askjeeves but if american users wish to see the famous 'valet' character they can visit www.askjeeves.com. It even has the option recently of dressing up your own personal Jeeves with various clothing including Ben Sherman garments and the sharing him with your friends.
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/oreilly/6691478/
The original 'Ask' search engine 'core' design was constructed by Garret Gruener and David Warthen in Berkeley, California. Gary Chevsky and Justin Grant worked on the latter askjeeves.com website which would include software that recognised questions asked in natural form rather than keywords. From the design Chevsky and Grant added, it would now appear as though the valet was fetching answers for them like a real life servant would do!
Ask.com is currently owned by InterActiveCorp, but three early investors called the Highland Capital Partners, Institutional Venture Partners and The Roda Group saw the potential in this clever 'intuitive' design.
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/ell-r-brown/4823783236/
The name Jeeves originated from a British first-class cricketer called Percy Jeeves, who played 50 games for Warickshire County Cricket club during the period of 1912-1914, he later joined the British Army and was killed in action in the year 1916. Two writers called P.G Wodehouse and H.P Lovecroft took the name and applied it to a fictional story called Jeeves and Wooster.
In Jeeves and Wooster, 'Bertie Wooster' is the young gentleman bachelor who is a member of the Aristocracy and the idle upper class, Jeeves plays a resourceful and accomplished personal valet to Bertie. The stories center around an elite membership of the 'Drones Club', a 'Drone' being a male bee living off the work of others, however many of the members are said to be intelligent and claiming day time jobs.
The story of Jeeves has been told time and again, parodied by P.H Canon in a paperback entitled 'Scream for Jeeves' and even claims a place in the Oxford English Dictionary as a generic term applied different types of servants.
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/js229/1656295166/
Second Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/30453880@N04/3624189034
Now to finish the hub on a high, If you are fond of collectibles or just love the Ask Jeeves theme, there is some merchandise that can be bought, however it is very rare to come by. After searching online I found photographs of the above 'Jeeves Fuss-ball table', Ebay shows 'Ask Jeeves about animals & nature' books for children, 'Ask Jeeves - Just Curious about science' book and a branded Pilsner beer glass. Anything else you will just have to ask around!
Photo courtesy of http://www.flickr.com/photos/22503092@N00/2273225652/