Samsung, Intel Invest In “Anticipatory Search” Startup Expect Labs

Expect Labs Expect Labs, which is a small startup in the San Francisco Bay Area, has a very impressive list of investors. Today the company announced a new funding round, though the figures weren't disclosed. Investors are the venture or investment arms of Intel, Samsung and Telefonica. Telefonica is the world's fourth largest telco and owns mobile operator O2 in the UK. Previous investors included Google, Greylock, Bessemer, IDG Ventures, KPG Ventures, Quest Venture Partners. The company has one product called MindMeld. It's sort of a (video) chat app but really more of a technology demonstration.  [...]

Comparison Engine FindTheBest Debuts Local Classifieds

Structured data comparison engine FindTheBest has evolved impressively since its launch in August 2010. The site has become progressively richer and more usable. It has expanded into more categories. And, as of today, that includes local classified listings in jobs, cars and rental housing. FindTheBest is a kind of "anti-search engine" and the brainchild of DoubleClick founder Kevin O’Connor, who launched the site to provide better information than he believed was available in general search results: was created out of my desire to organize part of the Internet, filte [...]

U Can’t Make This Stuff Up: MC Hammer Announces Wiredoo Search Engine

wiredoo-logo "If you want to swing the bat, why not swing for the fences?" With that statement, MC Hammer -- yes, that MC Hammer -- announced his new search engine, Wiredoo, during the Web 2.0 Summit today. The website says that Wiredoo is in pre-Beta right now, but there's a sign-up form for anyone interested in trying it out when the search engine is ready for real testing. Hammer explained that Wiredoo's focus will be on "deep search" and described that as another word for "relational search." He used simple query examples like "cars" and "homes" and showed how a search for the latter would produc [...]

Data Visualization & Infographic Search Engine Launches Infographics (or data visualizations) are all the rage in content marketing today, and is launching with hopes of becoming "the largest community for sharing, creating and promoting data visualizations."  The site currently offers a search functionality and a submission feature to help users find & share infographics from across the web. [youtube][/youtube] As expected with a name like, the site is aesthetically appealing with quite a few bells and whistles.  A "Twitterize Yourself" section exists allowing users to [...]

“Anti-Search Engine” FindTheBest Adds Buying Guides, Top 10 Slideshows

There are a number of ways to describe FindTheBest, the site launched last year by DoubleClick founder Kevin O’Connor. One is "decision engine" another might be "comparison engine," a third could be "anti-search engine." It might be called an "anti-search engine" because, like Blekko's Rich Skrenta, FindTheBest's O'Conner believes that search results have become cluttered and filled with spam. O'Conner wanted to provide structured, "apples-to-apples comparisons" of places, institutions and products with total transparency. The site aggregates and then provides structured comparison dat [...]

StumbleUpon Becomes Android App Discovery Tool

StumbleUpon, which these days calls itself a "discovery engine," has integrated app discovery into its Android application's repertoire. It takes into account a range of variables to make recommendations to individual users. Those include user preferences, interests and the choices of friends and other "like-minded users." Once installed, you simply hit the StumbleUpon logo/button in the lower right corner of the app and you're presented with a succession of third party app choices. Its suggestions were generally pretty good in my quick examination and use of the app. App discovery has b [...]

DoubleClick Founder Launches Structured “Decision Engine”

At first blush it wasn't impressive to me. I assumed from a quick look that FindTheBest was just a collection of links and "best of" lists. It thus seemed strange that DoubleClick founder Kevin O'Connor would come out of quasi-retirement to launch a basic directory site. But as we got into it a bit more it was clear there was a larger and more interesting project going on. FindTheBest is a kind of comparison engine for structured data of all sorts. It's not an alternative to search per se. In fact it will rely heavily on search and SEO for user discovery. The idea is to provide consumer [...]

Yolink Goes After Publishers With Search Preview Tool

There have been many search "preview" tools, plug-ins and add-ons that try and give users a peek at what's behind a link on a SERP. Their objective is to circumvent the click and enable people to more quickly get to desired information. Almost all of these tools have failed to deliver on the promise of that idea. Generally, also, consumers don't use them. One of the most obnoxious in recent memory is the blog plug-in tool "snap shots." Many blogs installed it because it looked "cool" but did very little in the way of adding value. Bing does a version of this currently, which is relativel [...]

Fun Stats: 28% Of Sites Use Google Analytics; 5% Have Facebook Or Twitter Links

Factual has analyzed data from 4 million web sites and provided a holiday gift for stats junkies. Did you know 5% of pages have either a Twitter or Facebook link? Or that 28% of sites run Google Analytics? Or 12% of them run Google AdSense? Now you do! The core data comes from CommonCrawl, a non-profit group designed to crawl the web and provide data for anyone to use. Gil Elbaz is both a founder of CommonCrawl and of Factual, a start-up that creates tables of structured information from data found on the open web (see Factual: Parting The Curtains Of The Invisible Web). Factual found st [...]

Pre-Xmas Sale On Wolfram iPhone App

The previous $50 price tag was probably a serious miscalculation (pun intended) by the folks at Wolfram Alpha, when they launched their iPhone app. Pricing is an art, not a science. However, for a limited time only (the remainder of the year) they have decided to put it on sale for $19.99. There was an iPhone-friendly mobile website that has been taken down to avoid the "why buy the cow when the milk is free" problem. We'll see if the $19.99 price tag is still too high. But if you're inclined to jump at this lower price point . . . act now, supplies are limited. No rainchecks. [...]

Bug: Google Social Search Goes Offline Temporarily

Over the weekend, I received several emails, noticed dozens of Tweets, saw several forum posts and noticed for myself that Google Social Search experimental search feature went offline. If you have opt in to the Social Search feature at you will notice an error on your Google searches that reads, "The experiment you're trying to access is no longer available. Go to experiments overview." Google has confirmed this is a temporary issue and that a fix will be in place sometime today or tomorrow. Here is Google's official statement on this matter: The Google Soci [...]

Does Marissa Mayer’s “Perfect Search Engine” Already Exist In Siri?

Recently IDG News Service asked Google's Marissa Mayer about the "perfect search engine." Here was the question posed: "What is the perfect search engine? If you had a magic wand and could create it, what would it look like? What would it do?" Mayer replied: "It would be a machine that could answer that question, really. It would be one that could understand speech, questions, phrases, what entities you're talking about, concepts. It would be able to search all of the world's information, [find] different ideas and concepts, and bring them back to you in a presentation that was really infor [...]

Five More Search Tools You May Not Know … But Should

Have you ever needed to see the search results for another city -- maybe because you want to see what PPC ads are shown somewhere else? Have you ever needed to see search results from a different country, or in a different language? Maybe you're into real time search, and you'd love a place to find the latest photos and videos being shared on Twitter. Or perhaps you're planning a vacation abroad, but you're not sure when is the best time to visit Europe. It's time again for another roundup of the latest and greatest search tools and search engines, and in this article, I'll share five such [...]

Wolfram Alpha Makes Public Debut

The highly anticipated Wolfram Alpha search engine made its debut today, although Google tossed in a little spoiler. The webcast was apparently difficult for some to view, but you can get impressions of what happened from Between The Lines and Bits. The site also has a new blog and Twitter account, and we'll be looking at it more closely in the near future ourselves. There's more discussion on Techmeme. Postscript: See Impressive: The Wolfram Alpha "Fact Engine", our review of the service. [...]

U Rank – Microsoft’s Social Search Experimental Site

Out now from Microsoft Research is U Rank, an experiment that allows people to move results around, as well as share them with friends and add comments to listings. Want to play? Sigh. You have to register using a Windows Live ID. Why not just make it open for anyone to use on a cookie basis? The cookie could allow short term changes to be remembered, while logging in could be done for those who wanted to protect their edits in the long term. Anyway, once in, you can do a search and wait, and wait, and wait to get back results. Perhaps the response time will improve. When they [...]

Google Expands Edit My Search Results Feature?

The Google Like/Don't Like feature, where you can move up results, hide search results, or remove search results, seems to have been expanded to a group of test searchers. We have reports from TechCrunch, Google Operating System, and Justin Hileman, with reports of users seeing this feature in the main search results. Justin does an excellent job taking us through each feature with screen shots. I personally have never seen an implementation of this on any of my searches. But I know Google has been testing this over the course of the year. [...]

SEO For Semantic Search Engines

A new generation of search engines is starting to become publicly available, so it's time to start thinking about how it will affect SEO efforts. The new search engines I'm talking about are the semantic search engines, meaning they are search engines that can be queried using natural language (not keywords like when using Google). Behind the scenes, these search engines try to understand the meaning behind the text web pages and so when you query them, they map what your query means and find answers based on the meaning they've extracted. It's all very neat, and there are many examples: Po [...]

Visual Search The Future? Spare Me The Eye Candy

About two years ago, I wrote an article called Why Search Sucks & You Won't Fix It The Way You Think. In it, I explained various ways people have tried to make search "visual" and why those have largely failed. That's mainly because "list view" or "10 blue links" still works for lots of search activities. But visual search has picked up some attention recently with new players coming in. Is visual search the future, where we'll be flying through our results Minority Report-style? Maybe in several years, but for now, I still see a lot of eye candy and no real b [...]

Microsoft Launches Experimental Search Site Tafiti

Built on its new Silverlight application, Microsoft last night released a new, experimental search site dubbed "Tafiti," which means "do research" in Swahili. You'll need to download Silverlight to use the engine, which offers a richer "visualization" of Microsoft Live search results. It offers Web, RSS, image, news and book search presented in a rotating carousel. It also offers the ability to drag and save search results. The most provocative (though perhaps impractical) aspect of Tafiti is its "Tree View" that literally indicates search results as leaves on a tree. Don't see this as [...]

Imagine Live Search – Microsoft’s Test Site Launches

Spotted via LiveSide, Imagine Live Search is a new experimental search engine from Windows Live. Like those from Ask (Ask X), Google (SearchMash) and Yahoo (Alpha), it provides a mixture of results all on the same page. Below is a look at Microsoft's new test bed search engine, Imagine Live Search, as well as a comparison to the other test bed search engines from the other providers. Imagine Live Search: I figured I do a search for [george bush] and show you some of the features. Here is a quick overview of the page: Let me go through each element: The [...]

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