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There wasn't much mainstream press fanfare (just a couple of pieces) about the launch of self-described next-generation shopping search engine (you have to register to use the beta).

Behind it are the folks that started MySimon, which has been squandered by CNET. Jason Dowdell thinks pretty highly of what they're doing from a technical standpoint.

What I find interesting is the way in which they're aggregating ratings/reviews and related contextual (not advertising in this case) information to help consumers do research before buying.

Recall we said that this type of information (ratings/reviews) is going to be an important local search/IYP product feature on those sites that want repeated research-oriented consumer usage (as opposed to White Pages lookups).

Ads are from Google. This will be an interesting one to watch; it's a different kind of shopping search. And I expect local to make it into the mix somehow before too long (based on the fact that offline is where the buying is happening).

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