If you haven’t heard of human powered search engine, Stumpedia, you might want to give it a whirl. It is essentially a human-powered search engine with a social aspect to it. In other words, Stumpedia allows content producers to submit and profit from their work and then allows the search community to determine relevancy of search results. While it is similar to human powered search engines Mahalo and Wikia Search, it differentiates itself because it is powered by the very people that use it.
Every year on April 1st, we see some pretty clever April Fools jokes played by search engines. One of my all time favorites is when Google revealed a very secret part of their algorithm by disclosing what Pigeon Rank is and how it works. Here is a summary of some of the better jokes I came across today. Enjoy!
I know that LinkedIn Company Profiles is in beta but seriously, they should have fine-tuned it a bit more before announcing it to the world. In a March 20th announcement, LinkedIn informed us that we would now be able to see over 160,000 company profiles in the same manner that you can see individual profiles. These include Fortune 500 companies such as eBay to philanthropic organizations such as the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
After reading about how companies like Google, Microsoft and Yahoo collect information about people online and use it for targeted advertising (behavioral marketing), one New York lawmaker said there ought to be a law against it. He is now working to make that a reality. The New York Times reports that Assemblyman, Richard L. Brodsky is the sponsor of a New York bill to limit how companies collect data on computer users. If the bill becomes a law, it would make it a crime — punishable by a fine to be determined — for certain Web companies to use personal information about consumers for advertising without their consent.
Now that Google officially owns DoubleClick, there is another dilemma at hand and that is they also own a SEO company. Is this a conflict of interest? Absolutely! Let’s face it – Google is now in the SEO business – selling services through DoubleClick’s Performics to people who want to rank well on search engines, including Google. This also places Google in the paid inclusion business, something it called evil back in 2004, when it went public.
Danny Sullivan has written an open letter to Google asking them to do the right thing – namely to spin off Performics as they should not own such a company.
Mashable reports that YouTube has answered the call of making sure you can see your favorite videos just about anywhere. The popular video site has announced they are launching several new APIs that will let you be even more interactive with their service from just about anywhere.
Stan Schroeder wrote a piece on Mashable questioning whether the popular micro-blogging service, Twitter should be used for anything important. He writes, “Here’s a simple rule: if it’s important, don’t say it on Twitter. If it requires a response, don’t say it on Twitter. If you actually care whether anyone will see what you’ve just written, don’t say it on Twitter. Twitter, however fun it may be, simply isn’t designed for it.” Sorry, I don’t agree.
I finally got my photos from the SMX West conference in Santa Clara up on Flickr. Sorry it has taken so long but last week I spent the majority of time digging out and keeping up with blogs and social media stuff. There is just under 90 photos there, some of which were taken from the sessions I live blogged while others are more related to the night life and people we hung out with all week.
Lot’s of talk related to search engine Ask lately. First there were rumors that Ask would be laying off some of its workforce and abandoning the Teoma technology they had worked so hard on the last few years. Then Ask responds and calls the rumors false. Those of us who are cheering Ask on in the battle for search market share breathed a sign of relief… but not for long. The next day a story breaks reporting that Ask has laid off 8% of their workforce (40 jobs) and that they were changing the strategy of the search engine to “focus to better answering search queries posed as questions.” This was followed by a report that Ask would become a search engine geared towards married women.
If that wasn’t enough drama, today we hear from Ask once again claiming that despite all the rumors and speculation, they remain committed to search. Are you confused? I know I am.
For you Twitteraholics, I’d like to point out some gadgets that may help to simplify and enhance the experience of using Twitter. They range from browser plug-ins, desktop applications and even mash-ups that turn the Twitter experience into a three dimensional geographical event.