People+, A People Search Directory App, Coming To Google Glass In 2014

people-plus-icon People+, a people directory and search app that's available now on iOS, is coming to Google Glass in 2014. The company bills its service as a "Wikipedia about professionals and companies," and its unreleased Glass app was selected as a finalist this week at the DEMO Fall conference for emerging technology. As the company's website explains, People+ builds its database of companies and individuals via volunteer contributors and from publicly available sources. It takes that information and creates what it calls "an intelligent, curated directory of people and companies" that "helps you fi [...]

Is Being Found Part Of Your Social Media Strategy?

[caption id="attachment_158516" align="alignright" width="300"] Social search optimization should be part of your social media strategy. Image: CC BY-SA 2.0 by olarte.ollie[/caption] Successful communication is all about getting the right message in front of the right people at the right time. In the first part of this two-part series on search and social media sites, I noted the undeniable importance of social media as evidenced by the sheer volume of social media updates posted daily on Twitter and Facebook (not to mention lesser-known sites like VK in Russia and Sina Weibo in China). [...]

The 1940 U.S. Census: Soon, A Searcher’s Treasure Trove

1940-census-featured Big news for genealogists, historians and even for people just curious about their own families: the 1940 U.S. Census is now available on the web. Unfortunately, at this point at least, it takes a bit of skill and determination to navigate through the data, though there are many efforts underway to make this incredibly valuable trove of data more easily searchable. For more info and to begin searching, here’s a collection of direct links to some helpful material. Since the database became available on the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) last week I’ve heard from [...]

How To Track U.S. Congress Members’ Tweets

Many U.S. Senators and Representatives are tweeting opinions, updates, images, documents, etc. these days, and Twitter can be a very useful, if not an essential tool, to learn about what’s going on directly from each member, especially regarding controversial legislation such as SOPA. An easy to use but powerful web tool (it's also free) named PolitickerUSA can save you a lot of time and effort informing you as to what members of congress are tweeting about right now. In one location you can quickly access the non-stop real-time stream of tweets from Senators, Reps, President Obama, go [...]

Topsy Launches Twitter Expert Search; Better Options Exist

Topsy, the Twitter-focused real-time search engine, has launched a new tool aimed at helping users find the right people to follow called Topsy Expert Search. The blog post seems to suggest that this is a "labs" product, but there's a prominent link to Expert Search right from Topsy's home page. Either way, Expert Search seems like a tool that's not quite ready for prime-time. Consider, for example, an expert search for SEO: (click for larger version) No disrespect to the account holders who are listed for that query -- they very well may be SEO experts. But I think most readers [...] Debuts Local Biz Search, Goes After Google

Not long ago quietly introduced its own local business search. The site, the original "people search" engine, has always offered "yellow pages" listings but now the company has built its own database in the background. Accordingly, WhitePages claims its data are more accurate than you'll find on search engines and Google in particular. The company goes directly after Google in its press release and a related video introducing local business search: For example, if someone was using Google to look up contact information for Target in the Seattle area, more than 6,000 result [...]

Another 5 Search Tools You May Not Know … But Should

Wouldn't it be great if you could use a search engine without needing to touch your mouse? You know, type your query and then scan and even click through to results without actually clicking the mouse button? Or maybe you're looking for an alternate source of search advertising data, like how many advertisers are bidding on certain keywords. Or maybe you're into something more mundane, like finding an apartment to call home. In this roundup of five search tools you may not know about, I'll introduce you to possible answers to those questions and a couple more. This is the third in my occas [...]

Hoping To Improve People Search, Google Launches “Profile Results”

Ever searched for yourself on Google and come away dissatisfied, especially if someone else you share a name with seems to dominate the results? Ever looked for someone else and been disappointed that you couldn't find the person you wanted? Google's new "Profile Results" launching today aim to correct both problems. Since the end of 2007, Google has allowed people to create Google Profile pages for use with certain Google services. For example, if you created content in Google Maps, your Google Profile let you share who you were with others using that service. The same profile also [...]

Find Friends On Twitter With Twitter People Search

Twitter announced that you can now use their people search feature to find friends, family or colleagues that are using Twitter. For example, I wanted to see if any of my immediate family is on Twitter, so I searched for schwartz. It looks like I am the most popular Schwartz on Twitter (ahem). But it does list another 233 people with the name Schwartz, so I will scan through them to see if I know anyone. I do wish there was an RSS flavor for this search, so I can track particular names. But the normal Twitter Search has RSS, so that works. [...]

McCain Using Google To Vet VP Candidates

According to Reuters, presumptive Republican nominee John McCain is using Google as a tool to do background checks on potential running mates: "You know, basically it's a Google," he said to laughter at a fund-raising luncheon when asked how the selection process was going. "What you can find out now on the Internet -- it's remarkable." Here's what he might find on four top potential Republican VP candidates: --Charlie Crist, governor of Florida --Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor --Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal --Kansas Sen. Sam Brownback If McCain gets tired of conventional se [...]

Yahoo Including Facebook Profile Images In Search Results

The Digital Inspiration blog is reporting that Facebook profile images are now appearing as thumbnails in general Yahoo search results (as opposed to image search results). I tried several times to find the images, using different people's names along with related phrases including "Facebook profile," and was unable to duplicate the results. (Google has been including Facebook Profile data in search results for some time.) [...]

PEW Survey Finds Most People Don’t Google Themselves That Often, After All

Marge Simpson Googling Herself "All this time I thought 'googling' yourself meant the other thing." A PEW/Internet Survey out this week found that 47% of internet users have done ego searches, up from 22% five years ago. That nearly half of internet users are searching for themselves seems excessive, but only 3% say they check regularly. Most (74% of those who have done such searches) have only checked once or twice. As our use of the internet decreases our privacy, the study also found that most internet users don't find this to be a concern. 61% of adults don't feel they need to [...]

Spock: People Search With A Man + Machine Approach

Last week, I wrote about the overall people search landscape, which, while not new, has been recently expanding and making full use of all that is shiny Web 2.0. Spock is the latest of these services to leverage social networks, intelligent web crawling, and community involvement. Spock launched in private beta in April, then in public beta in August. With Spock, you can search on a person's name or a keyword that may be associated with a person, and are returned a list of people with associated tags, photos, and web sites. From there, you can drill into more information about any of those as [...]

Surveying The People Search Landscape

Can you imagine trying to sort through billions of web pages without a search engine? Inconceivable! They make it easy and fast to find information. Now how about finding one of the six billion people on the planet. Where’s the Google of people search? As it turns out, an entire industry of people search engines is ramping up. In this series, I’ll be looking at the people search engines: existing ones that are revitalizing, brand new ones that have emerged and yes, whether or not Facebook will be the one to consume them all. People search certainly isn't new. As Michael Tanne, CEO of Win [...]

4 Questions & Answers You Should Know About Facebook’s Public Search Listings

Last week, Facebook formally announced that it was making millions of personal profiles accessible to the public via major search engines. As far as I can tell, Facebook members who never intended or expected to be listed this way were suddenly opted-in to Facebook's new plan. I say "as far as I can tell" because despite several attempts over the past week, Facebook has failed to provide me with any official answers. Below, some of the key questions I put to the service about the profile move and member privacy issues, along with answers as best I can determine on my own. To reduce t [...]

Facebook Opens Profiles To Tap Into Google Traffic, While Google Grabs Facebook’s News Feed Idea

Google is getting a bit more like Facebook by enabling a Facebook-style news feed within its Orkut social networking site, while the king of the walled gardens Facebook acknowledges in actions (rather than words) that it really can't go it alone without search engines like Google, as it prepares to let crawlers into its public user profiles. Actually, Facebook is telling its users that existing profiles already accessible to search engines will be exposed even more. Below, more on the moves, with lots of screenshots and explanations. Facebook Says Public Listings To Be Made Crawlable Public [...]

People Search Engine Spock Goes Live

In the increasingly popular category of "people search" much-anticipated new search engine Spock launched with a public beta today. It's running very slowly this morning and so it has been challenging to use. However Spock joins a growing list of "vertical" engines focused on the segment such as Zoominfo, Wink, Pipl, WikiYou, PeekYou and several others, including and LinkedIn. Of course most people search occurs on Google and Yahoo, et al. But these engines hope to offer more depth and precision, given the frequent ambiguity and "noise" that can occur in general search results [...]

Facebook One Of The Top Search Engines? I Dunno About That!

I shouldn't -- but I couldn't resist doing a quick poke at Facebook's pronouncement that it is the "most used people search engine on the web." Really? According to? Facebook gives some stats that perhaps back up this claim, but only if you consider Facebook a people search engine. I don't. Not yet. It's hard for me to consider something a people search engine when, until last September, it didn't allow most people to actually register with it. Of course, I don't need comScore's latest stats to tell me Facebook is taking off since then. The drip-drip-drip of people asking to be my fr [...]

Pipl – A People Search Engine

Pipl is a people search engine that tries to be a little different. Rather than just go off and hunt for email addresses, this tries to search through the deep/invisible/hidden web to return content that other search engines are going to miss. The interface is simple - type in first name, last name, city, state and country, then let it go to see what it'll find. It searches across a wide variety of resources, and it does it reasonably quickly - with the searches that I ran I'd get responses in 5 seconds or less. Pipl pulled content from 192 (which is a British site providing access to elector [...]

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