What Can One Man Learn in Five Years?

I was going to stay away from posting today, and focus on writing. But I passed my daily word count already, so here's a treat. Eckhard Pfeiffer, who ran Compaq but was run out on a rail in 1999, is coming back to Chair a business search engine, Accoona. Now,…

accoonaI was going to stay away from posting today, and focus on writing. But I passed my daily word count already, so here’s a treat. Eckhard Pfeiffer, who ran Compaq but was run out on a rail in 1999, is coming back to Chair a business search engine, Accoona.

Now, let’s remember, this is the same fellow who engineered the purchase of Alta Vista, then demanded it come public within six months. His lieutenant then drove Alta Vista into portaldom, and ultimately, into the arms of CMGI, which then imploded.

In my interviews with Louis Monier and others, I was painted quite a picture of Compaq under Pfeiffer. As I recall, Monier called them “gunslingers” who had “no idea what they were doing.”

Apparently, Pfeiffer has learned a thing or two. Maybe he’s trying to take a page from Eric Schmidt’s playbook – run a lumbering IT giant (in Schmidt’s case, Novell), then suprise the world by going to a small internet search startup. Only, Eric joined after Google was profitable, and he didn’t wait five years….Anyway. Should be interesting.

From what I could find on Accoona (note the logo has the “infinity” symbol, I guess that’s larger than googol), the company has some kind of deal with China (hot!) and uses proprietary AI techniques (so far, no so hot!). More :

Accoona is a New Jersey-based internet company devoted to making it easier for people to find information on the Web. Accoona has pioneered an innovative search engine that makes use of artificial intelligence to understand the meaning of words. Accoona’s Artificial Intelligence Search Technology enables you to highlight key words, SuperTargeting your results and delivering you the pages most relevant to that search term. Accoona’s search engine does not overlook Web pages that contain relevant information but happen not to use the precise key words you enter.

On March 1, 2005, Accoona will introduce an artificial-intelligence toolbar that lives unobtrusively on the desktop. The toolbar will allow users to search the Web intelligently as well as to search the documents on their computer. Say you want to locate an old e-mail but can’t remember the sender’s name or the precise topic, even if you provide only a vague description, the Accoona Artificial Intelligence Search Technology will find the e-mail. The Accoona toolbar is your personal librarian.

Accoona Corp.’s mission is:

To revolutionize how people find information on the Web, through a new search engine powered by artificial intelligence that understands the meanings of words.

To provide the largest proprietary online database of information on companies worldwide.

To facilitate foreign companies doing business in China and Chinese companies expanding into the global marketplace.

Accoona is launching worldwide on December 6, 2004.

Hat tip: SEW.

Author: John Battelle

A founder of NewCo (current CEO), sovrn (Chair), Federated Media, Web 2 Summit, The Industry Standard, Wired. Author, investor, board member (Acxiom, Sovrn, NewCo), bike rider, yoga practitioner.

2 thoughts on “What Can One Man Learn in Five Years?”

  1. I have created a artificial intelligence search engine too, check out http://www.SirSeek.com where you see the working beta (I am not using our own index of websites YET, our search & seek web fetching bot is still in development, will even retrieve results when none indexed to index). This will index general web sites and pages linked to by those sites, any topic of data will be accepted. I know its got too many affiliate ads (I need the money), I know it doesn’t have billions of web pages indexed (YET), I know my internet access provider can be a little slow at time, I know I am not comparable (YET) but I am working on it. Any suggestions are appreciated so I can continue making the World’s best search engine (will be better than the rest once complete).I have been making specific topic search engines since 1998 (now moving to a caching, spidering and non topic engine design). Some examples are http://www.canuckster.com , http://www.sparesomechange.com , http://www.whak.com , http://www.greybruce.org , http://www.hivsearch.com , etc…

  2. Would you consider this? Passing the Test? For over ten years, I have been working on a method of semantic interpretation that applies in any situation. Using this method, I believe that a software program can pass the Turing Test. The book, “How to Design a Universal Artificial Intelligence,” is currently online, in its entirety, and I am requesting your review of this work. This is it; this is real; this is a working counterpart program. http://universalartificialintelligence.com


Leave a Reply