Written by Ali Smith, Portfolio Manager, Consensys Mesh
Web discovery tools have fallen short when it comes to connecting users with meaningful information online. Problems like ineffective filtering, lack of context, algorithmic biases towards certain monetization goals, and insufficient human curation are making it harder for people to find relevant information.
Enter Index Network. Harnessing the power of AI and decentralization, Index Network empowers individuals to build and use custom search engines without compromising data ownership, composability, collaboration, or monetization.
We are proud to welcome Index Network to the TachyonX Program!
The team consists of co-founders Seref Yarar and Seren Sandikci. Seref holds a degree in Software Engineering and has experience working across a range of engineering roles. Notably, he served as the Head of Engineering at Genart Medya, one of Turkey's leading independent digital brand and media agencies. Seren graduated with a degree in Industrial Design and worked as a UX Designer at QNB Finansbank before starting Index Network. Currently, the team is based in Barcelona, Spain.
How does Index Network work?
Index Network lets users create and design custom search engines, known as indexes. Rather than relying on broad-based tools like Google or ChatGPT to scan the entire web, each index focuses only on the content (web pages, PDFs, word documents, etc.) specified by the user.
These indexes are searchable and filterable, functioning as specialized topic-based search engines. AI-driven insights offer further enhancement, with features like predictive search and semantic comprehension, fostering richer, more contextually relevant search results.
Using Lit Protocol's decentralized access control, creators can establish on-chain access criteria, which can also be linked to collaboration and monetization. Users can set conditions such as membership in a DAO, owning a particular NFT, possessing a certain amount of ETH, or meeting any smart contract function's criteria to manage access. These access controls offer additional support for a range of users, including companies, communities, and DAOs, and ensure creators retain content access control and ownership rights.
Via the Ceramic Network, Index Network offers data interoperability and composability and allows discoverability of different data models such as attestations, events and products. Utilizing IPFS, Ceramic guarantees indexes are housed on a decentralized network, letting users construct, own, and store their data independent of centralized third parties. This decentralization ensures users retain data ownership.
What is an example use case?
Meet Aria, an avid book enthusiast who has spent years researching and curating lists of books across various genres, themes, and authors. She's known among her community as someone who has a keen eye for discovering hidden gems and creating thematic lists, such as "Feminist Sci-Fi Novels of the 21st Century" or "Detective Novels Set in Victorian London."
Aria hears about Index Network and thinks this could be a platform where she can compile, curate, and share her specialized book lists with the broader online community. Here's how she uses it:
- Creating Indexes: Aria starts by creating a unique index for "Feminist Sci-Fi Novels of the 21st Century." She adds detailed information, reviews, links to author interviews, and more to each book entry. This index is more than just a list; it's a rich tapestry of interconnected knowledge that offers depth to readers.
- Decentralized Control: Her index is stored on the Ceramic Network through IPFS, meaning that she maintains full ownership and control over it.
- Monetizing Access: Given the time and effort she puts into her curations, Aria decides to monetize access. She sets up a criteria using the Lit Protocol: Access to her full index is granted to anyone who holds one of her limited-edition NFTs, which she has minted as a representation of her brand and expertise. Those without the NFT can still see a teaser or a smaller subset of her list, but full access requires the NFT.
- Community Engagement: Aria's indexes gain popularity, and soon, she's approached by other book enthusiasts who want to collaborate. Together, they form a DAO that curates lists collectively, hosts virtual book discussions, and organizes author interviews. Their combined efforts draw even more attention, and the value of their NFTs – and thus the access to their exclusive content – increases.
- Continued Expansion: With the earnings from her NFT sales and her growing reputation as a top curator on Index Network, Aria expands her curatorial efforts. She starts creating indexes on related themes like sci-fi movie recommendations, interviews with prominent sci-fi authors, and more.
Index Network offers Aria a platform where her passion, expertise, and curatorial skills can be translated into valuable, owned, and monetizable content.
Additional example use cases include:
- Developers can explore developer documents and integrations using composable discovery engines to retrieve real-time data.
- Index network empowers decentralized media and allows for journalists to create composable queries and explore a range of perspectives ensuring thorough and accurate reporting.
- Financial analysts can query data across companies to identify sector trends and market opportunities.
If you are interested in the project and would like to learn more, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org.