Monday I went down to Palo Alto to meet with Udi Manber, CEO of A9. He wanted to show me the next release of his engine, and I was eager to see it. I knew Udi had a number of improvements up his sleeve, and tonight A9 plans to launch them. That same day, Josh Quittner, my editor at Business 2.0, asked if I wanted to write up the A9 news for his site – turns out that this time, Amazon was briefing a lot of journalists, not just one humble blogger (as they did with me in April.) Sure, I said, happy to write it up, but I don’t want to write two entries – could I just post what I would have written here, over on his site, and point my readers to it? No problem, he said. So my write up is over here, on the Business 2.0 site, out on the “front porch” as Josh likes to call it, open to all. Come on back here to discuss the new engine once you’ve read my initial impressions.
PS – I don’t write the headlines, I am afraid. Why editors can’t help but focus on Google, I dunno….
I’m trying very hard to write this f*ing book, my posts will remain light. However, there’s much news in search land lately.
First, Yahoo bought MusicMatch.
Second, Google rolled out improvements to its Local Search – the note I received from Google PR is in the extended entry. (This space will REALLY heat up in the next few quarters). Last week it also updated its Alerts service.
Third, AOL announced a shopping search.
Fourth, Danny Sullivan takes a bow over at Yahoo Search Blog. This has provoked some commentary on whether this is getting a tad too close. I think Danny’s the best, but I’d probably take a pass on this one (then again, they didn’t ask!).
]]> Read More
ThomasB2B.com, a niche publisher, is launching an online advertising network that is focused only on the B2B marketplace and uses categories and content, rather than keywords, to drive adjacencies.
Others have taken the category route – Industry Brains, Kanoodle – but this is the first time it’s been verticalized, that I am aware of. Should be interesting to watch. Story is here, in Infoworld, though I just broke IDG’s lame linking policy by pointing you to it. (Incidentially, I’m told, by sources that are reliable, that IDG is reviewing the policy and has determined that it will force registration from offending linkers, as opposed to threatening lawsuits. That’s progress…)
Update: This is fun: a writer at eWeek, which competes with IDG, sent me a mail saying he’d be happy for some link love, and that his employer, Ziff, won’t sue me! So here you go, eWeek’s story on ThomasB2B….
(Hat tip to Gary)
Last year I was fortunate enough to attend the first Foo, the “Friends of O’Reilly” gathering up in Sebastapol. It led to a column a few months later about how I believed the geeks were starting to once again drive innovation. Foo led to Web 2.0, in a way, and I met a whole bunch of great folks who have helped the book, this site, and the conference. Today I’m heading up there again, and I’ll report again on the goings on, but on this blog, rather than in the column. This time it won’t take three months…but it will probably be a bit quiet on this front till I get back. (Image tip o’ the hat to Jeremy).
Toni Schneider, of OddPost fame, points me to the Blender Prototype, which is a unique approach to monetizing RSS feeds through affiliate links automatically inserted into customized RSS feeds. The prototype (caveat, it’s just that, not a robust commercial implementation) uses Amazon to create related book links in your RSS feeds. Worth checking out, it points us in neat directions. As Toni points out, this idea need not be limited to books…the prototype points to my earlier post on RSS business models as context. Cool!
I’m trying it out, but so far can’t get it to insert book links into my Boing Boing or Searchblog feeds. But then again, I’m probably doing something wrong…
Blender is from the guys behind Nav4, a nifty-looking contextual navigation tool.