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The way we use the internet today is almost indistinguishable from how we used it 10 years ago – but we still research online the same way. You type in some keywords and scroll through a list of text. Everything else about our online lives is integrated, yet we still go back to the same way of researching. Now, try to imagine researching online without the current search-giant as your launch pad. Pretty difficult right? Enter, This ‘discovery’ engine is changing the way we sift through the web’s resources to find information.

Founder Rod Austin started the company to create a research experience that mimics the way we use the web today. As a former newspaper digital director, he noticed the difficulty in sifting through information on search engines, and had a better idea.

“During my newspaper days I came to realize that a large number of breaking news items broke on Twitter, Facebook, and other social media outlets, but traditional search didn’t search social – and they still don’t, for the most part,” he said. “I thought ‘how can I create a way to search traditionally while incorporating the web 2.0 aspect of social media?’”

Three prototypes and countless hours later, Dotmos was born. Austin used the most-effective aspects from each of his prototypes to create Dotmos.

So, how does it work?

You probably have a list of websites you visit nearly every time you’re on the web researching for an article – we all do. And that list almost certainly includes some combination of social media, news and entertainment. Dotmos reflects the way you use the web by returning results that are most relevant to what you’re looking for. Rather than lines of text, Dotmos gives you snapshots of findings on its results pages – called ‘Dots’ – of resources like Google, Facebook, Pinterest, Wikipedia – you name it. As social media becomes one of the top ways to hear about breaking news, and everyday people’s ideas and opinions surrounding news events becomes more integrated as part of the story, Dotmos provides an easier way to find opinions surrounding events.

The differences are more than just presentation – Dotmos provides more-relevant content. For example, try searching your favorite movie title in your traditional engine. Then try it in Dotmos. The Dot lays out all the latest and most important information surrounding your topic. You’ll see reviews, trailers, tweets, iMDb profiles, and more. You can also organize this information by social site with a simple social media bar at the top of the page. Want to switch between tweets and YouTube videos on a single topic? Dotmos does so instantaneously. There has never been a more socially-aware way to search. In one of its most-distinguishing aspects, Dotmos features actual social media content in your search results. The relevant Dots for your search might be tweets, Facebook posts, discussions, and profiles.

After self-funding Dotmos in its first year, Austin will now begin to seek public funding for his product. Currently, the search engine is in the first stage of a three-part business model.

“We are at a really exciting time in the company,” said Austin. “Dotmos is at the point where the Dots are working really well for our test users. With our first round of funding we will be able to make them even better by providing more access points and new sources of traffic. We also plan on hiring in our first round of funding to really get cooking on some of the big ideas we have been building toward over the last year or so.”

Stay tuned in upcoming months for news on the Dotmos monetary strategy, hiring news, product rollouts, and other developments by following @Dotmosweb on Twitter.