free html hit counter May 2006 | John Battelle's Search Blog

Yahoo Bows New Video Search

By - May 31, 2006

Yahoo Video

Take that, YouTube, Google, MySpace, AOL, and everyone else!

From the release:

Yahoo! Inc….. today introduced Yahoo! Video (http://video.yahoo.com), an online video destination that combines the power of Yahoo! Search with new upload, browse and community …

Yahoo! Video allows users to access the most popular and relevant videos on the Internet including The Glomp, Lazy Ramadi and the latest Shakira music video. It brings together content in more ways than any other video Web site by crawling the Web, accepting uploads, receiving direct feeds from partners, and leveraging the Yahoo! Media Group’s unique content and industry relationships. As a leader in online video, Yahoo! already hosts and serves hundreds of millions of music, news, sports, movies, and television videos per month. Now, Yahoo! Video combines these assets with content from across the Web and directly from publishers, enabling users to determine what videos are most important to them:

- Featured, Popular, Category and Tag sections enable users to easily browse for videos.

- Users can subscribe to and watch channels, groups of videos related by source or topic, to stay current on content from their favorite publishers.

- Users can access the largest database of videos on the Web through Yahoo! Search

Additionally, Yahoo! Video enables users and video enthusiasts to participate in an active social community by rating, reviewing and sharing videos.

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Melanie's Round Up

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48m contribute user-content

A PEW study finds that nearly 50 million American adults, or about 35 percent of internet users, have contributed user-generated content (or UGC) on the internet. The news bit that is driving headlines, however, is that there is an up-tick in broadband home users—including 73 percent of those bloggers and online media self-publishers. “Adoption of high-speed internet at home grew twice as fast in the year prior to March 2006 than in the same time frame from 2004 to 2005,” primarily in middle-income homes. The Pew Internet & American Life Project report also notes that 51 percent of home broadband users are under 30 and only 36 percent were over 30 years old.

Picture 2-2Fo.rtuito.us

Sometimes people prefer to “StumbleUpon” rather than search. Premised on the same inclination, Fo.ruito.us helps people meet each other randomly, then decide if they like what they’ve found. One begins with an open email line to a stranger, with no knowledge about them—not their gender, race , age, nationality or otherwise. Users have four days to communicate and determine if they want to be friends. If you don’t make contact at least once, then you do not receive a new potential friend. Just released in beta, Fo.rtuito.us was founded by Chris Stegner. Picture 3

The Fo.rtuito.us websites says it “allows people to meet others who live completely different lives. We want people to be able to form some of the best friendships of their lives and in many cases from the least likely of candidates. We want this web-site to open their eyes to the world they’re missing by not learning about others.”

TechCrunch’s Michael Arrington likes the idea. And WebProNews points out a bug: “a photo is required for signup, which takes away from the anonymity and the beauty-is-on-the-inside concept”—just don’t upload a portrait as your icon.

Picture 1-3 Stalkerati

And once you’ve made new friends, you can start stalking them with Stalkerati. This friendly little mash-up of web 2.0 sites provides a one-site search on the individual of your choosing simultaneously in MySpace, FaceBook, Friendster, Google, Technorati, and for images (in Yahoo, Flickr).

Says the creator, Jared, who starts college in California this fall: “This site is basically a little hack I put together in 2 hours on May 1st, 2006 when a friend was heading out for a blind date and my sis was asked out (via email) by a guy that googled her. I hope to eliminate the hassle of going to 4-5 sites to find information/check out/cyberstalk/[insert excuse for cyberstalking here] on someone.”

The site, launched early this month, just finished a push that brought with it a digg traffic jam, so you may have to check back if you want to test it out.

Gsa Beautyshot An Interview with Google Enterprise VP

Dan Farber at ZNet interviewed VP/GM of GoogleEnterprise Dave Girouard last week. Here’s part one and part two of the interview, in case you missed it on your way out for the weekend. They discuss “elusive Google Web Office,” the Enterprise portfolio, disinterest in the software game, and product strategy in coordination with Microsoft’s Office Live. “The company is experimenting with a hosted service that includes domain hosting, email, calendar, instant messaging, desktop search and administrative services.”

Picture 4OurStory beta

The startup OurStory publically launches in beta its interactive, web-based scrapbook. OurStory’s various tagging and uploading features let users create a timeline of events they can share and search through. Silicon Beat gives a full review of its many neat features, like automatically searching the web for pictures of events you mention and pinging relatives to fill-in unanswered questions about pictures. And CBS has an audio interview from when OurStory launched in mid-May. Most of OurStory is free, but the upgrade comes with the ability to store multiple timelines, control several privacy circles, and eventually burn your story to DVD or print it into a book.

Four Billion Last Quarter

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That’s how much Internet advertising accounts for, the IAB reports. As with every other one of these reports, I predict this figure will be revised, upward. A lot. For the second year in a row, the first quarter beat the last year’s fourth quarter, which is very unusual in advertising markets (the fourth quarter is very heavy on the holiday marketing spend…and February sucks, usually).

Update: AdSense Beta API Is Official

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From the Google AdSense Blog:

What can I do with the AdSense API?

Using the AdSense API, you can enable users to perform a variety of AdSense functions without leaving your website, including the following:

- Create an AdSense account

- Manage an AdSense account

- Create and modify AdSense for content ad units and link units, AdSense for search boxes, and Referrals

- View detailed reports to monitor performance and earnings

How does the AdSense API benefit your site and users?

By making it easy for publishers to sign up for AdSense and generate revenue, the API offers another compelling reason for publishers to choose your service over a competitor’s–and remain loyal to you. The AdSense API is great for publishers who don’t want the hassle of setting up their own accounts or dealing with cutting and pasting HTML snippets.

D Conference: I'm Not There…

By - May 30, 2006

I am usually at D this time of year, soaking in the big names and big interviews. But this year, work and other parts of life intervened. But Eric Savitz, of Barrons (current) and Industry Standard (past) fame, is blogging it, and I recommend his work. He covers Bill Gates’ interview, and it sounds good. Gates said MSFT will be doing “petabytes in the sky,” for example, when asked about the Google Grid.

Melanie's Round Up

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“Googlearchy or Googlocracy?”

An article by several researchers refutes the notion that the Google search engine reinforces the popularity of high PageRank sites. The IEEE Spectrum article “Googlearchy or Googlocracy?” is by five academics at the University of Indiana, Filippo Menczer, Santo Fortunato, Alessandro Flammini, and Alessandro Vespignani–who discuss the surprising results of their original paper:

While search engines do not make for a level playing field, their use partially mitigates the rich-get-richer nature of the Web, giving new sites an increased chance of being discovered.

Google AdsBot

Google has a new search spider called AdsBot that will visit the landing pages of ads to asses the quality of an ad campaign for AdWords. It can be blocked, like other search engine spiders, but AdRank scores will be penalized as non-participatory. SEW explains: That quality score, along with the amount you are willing to pay, is then used to determine an ad’s AdRank, the position where an ad will appear in the results. A high quality score means you can rank higher even if you pay less than others.

First mentioned last December, the AdsBot will begin operation soon. Here’s a comment by Page (in a recent, peripheral but relevant, interview) that gives some insight into the overall reasoning at play:

The reason people look at the ads spaces and eventually click on ads is because they’re really high quality—they’re comparable to the search results. If the ads are of substantially worse [quality] than the search results then—guess what, people are smart and they actually learn not to look at that area of the screen. If you test this: in places where there are normally banner ads, people’s eyes go around that area.

BotThe Invasion of MS Messenger

Microsoft is hosting a contest called “Invasion of Robots” to design accessory robots for its Live Messenger (beta). Developers are equipped with three software developer kits, challenged to create bots that enhance user experience in Messenger (e.g. adding features like picture sharing or search capability), for a total of $40K in prize money. There are three bots up for public voting so far—one provides Encarta answers to questions, another feeds quotes from “our fearless leader – W”. (Via TechTree)

WikiMapia

Wikipedia + Google Maps = WikiMapia.

BlockRocker the beta “Geoaggregator”

BlockRocker pulls geotags loaded in external sites, like Flickr, Technorati, and Webview360. Users can also submit their own geotags through Flickr, blog posts through Technorati, or any webpage with Blockrocker geotagging bookmarklet (modeled on del.icio.us). It’s creator, Rod Edwards, says eventually he hopes to integrate Block Rocker into any location-aware device. So “if you’re in downtown SF with nothing to do, I’d like you to be able to open BR.mobi on your phone and find out what’s going on that night within a three block radius of wherever you are. One step at a time, though.”

Looking for a few good (print reading) geniusesPicture 2-1

Google is recruiting with a full-page print ad in Wired magazine. Danny Sullivan at SEW advises, “If you didn’t skip three grades and failed to learn Lisp by age 10 like Niniane, there’s no need to apply.”

Web 2 Conference TM Issue: Tim Responds

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Tim’s back from vacation, and his thoughtful post is here. For anyone who was quick to judge this whole thing, I’d encourage you to read it.

New Google AdSense API: User Gen Monetization Ho!

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User generated content is hot – HOT! But if you’re a UGC (yup, I’m using the acronym) site, like RateItAll, Facebook, YouTube, or MySpace, how do you incent your members to post more great stuff, so you can make more money? Well, Google is only too happy to help you out there. Word has leaked recently (Eric was first) that Google is (reportedly) working on a new API that will allow content sites to distribute AdSense earnings to individual members. RateItAll apparently blew the embargo by posting a release discussing this too early. From it:

Pioneering online community and social network RateItAll.com today announced that it had integrated Google AdSense into its service via an API in order to share advertising inventory with RateItAll members.

By leveraging the Google AdSense API, RateItAll has enabled its members to create Google AdSense accounts, earn cash for their content contributions, and track their earnings without ever leaving the RateItAll.com Web site.

As SEOLowdown notes, this could be huge for sites like YouTube. Emphasis on could be. But coupled with Video Adsense, once might imagine a pretty interesting mash up here.

To toss a bit of cold water here, however, I’ve never seen UGC sites as the least bit driven by money. They are driven by pride, the desire to be first, reputation, whuffie. But dollars? That often screws it all up. I guess we’ll get to see soon enough…

When You're Worth More Than Ten Billion…

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Page Ziet

…next quarter’s numbers don’t really get you going. What might? Well, I’ve been on about this a lot in the past, but how about solving the Turing test? This Channel 4 piece (UK) covers Google’s European Zeitgeist conference. In the piece, Page is asked about what his ideal search engine would be: His answers: “The ultimate search engine would understand everything in the world,” Page says. “In computer science we call that Artificial Intelligence.”

More detail (much) here at the Memepunks blog.

Page and Schmidt are also asked about China, and privacy, and give the same answers they’ve given elsewhere. Save Page’s quote on waiting to go into China: “We took a principled stand for a long time….and all we did was lose marketshare.” Thanks KK.

Google Checkout

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Is this finally Google Payments? It’d be about time…