Monday, December 15, 2008

Got Questions? We Can Help With That.

I'm very pleased to introduce the newest feature on Mahalo, Mahalo Answers. We've been working on this quietly for a while now and it's exciting to get to share it finally with the world.

The basic concept is superficially similar to a few other services around the Web. Users can show up and ask questions or answer questions posed by other users. Then, a "best" answer is chosen that most directly provides the sought-after information.

Mahalo's bringing a few new concepts to the table. Perhaps most significantly, what we're calling "tips." If you want your question to get featured prominently, or if you want to ask something that may take a bit of time or expertise to properly answer, you can offer "Mahalo Dollars" for an answer. Collect 40 Mahalo Dollars (which would really be a matter of providing 4-8 really compelling answers) and you can turn them into actual money!

Of course, there are lots of other benefits to the system, too. Mahalo Answers interact with regular Mahalo pages. So if you're looking up Michael Jackson, and someone has already asked
for a list of all his #1 singles on Answers, you'd see that information on the regular Mahalo page.

Perhaps my personal favorite upgrade that Mahalo Answers brings to these kinds of Q&A services are the embeddable videos. A thread like this one, about Steven Seagal's finest on-screen moments, just isn't possible on other Answers sites, and it's really compelling stuff, almost like a crowd-sourced blog list.

So I'd encourage everyone to get a Mahalo username and password (if they don't already have one) and check this system out. We're all pretty proud of it.

Oh, and of course I got the Best Answer on that Steven Seagal thread with this unimpeachable classic: