If you’re looking for something to do, there are several event search engines you might use: Upcoming.org and Zvents are two biggies, while Joobili is a smaller one that combines events with travel search. But all of this is for finding offline events. What about the thousands of things happening on the web every day?
Enter Live Matrix. It’s a new site that’s just launched (into private beta) with enormous ambitions: to serve as a guide to everything happening online.
“We don’t include anything happening offline,” says co-founder Sanjay Reddy. “We include anything happening online that has a start time.”
Sure enough, Live Matrix has web-based events that include video/TV premieres, audio webcasts, product launches, special sales/auctions, live chats, games and contests, and even things happening in virtual worlds. Live Matrix has a crawler that it uses to extract data from certain web sites, and will also offer tools for anyone else to add events — from a standard Submit form to accepting CSV files and feeds.
“We’re indexing about 80,000 scheduled events per week, but that’s just the tip of the iceberg,” says co-founder Nova Spivack. “That’s probably only about 20% of what’s out there. We’ll accept listings from the ‘little guys’ and from major sites.”
The Live Matrix interface, in its current form, looks unmistakably like Digg and similar vote-based sites. But on Live Matrix, users vote by RSVPing to attend an event. And yes, the more RSVPs an event gets, the more visibility the event gets on Live Matrix’s platform, which includes its web site search engine, APIs, and widgets. Live Matrix is also working to sign distribution partners.
While Live Matrix may look and act a bit like Digg, its co-founders are more interested in pointing out that it’s a different animal than Clicker, a new guide for online TV and movies.
“Clicker is 99% on-demand video,” Spivack says. “We’re focused on web events, not TV. Clicker is more of a Hulu competitor [than a Live Matrix competitor].”
Spivack and Reddy say that Live Matrix will make money from ads and sponsored listings, and may also offer a paid, premium-style account for publishers that might include advanced analytics both before and after an event takes place. Spivack suggested that Live Matrix could even someday become an ad marketplace around the events it lists.
The site is currently accepting requests for access to its private beta at livematrix.com. Below is a screencast from co-founder Nova Spivack that shows how Live Matrix works.