eWEEK in the blogosphere
Clint Boulton: Google Watch a lot of time and resources in this area. HealthPricer
IS GOOGLE LOOKING TO TUCK CEO Michael Brown said, “Health is the next big search
IN A SEARCH STARTUP? area on the Web.” HealthPricer’s assets could dovetail
well with Google Health.
Ahandful of search engines Silobreaker, meanwhile, is a search and aggregation
madetheirdebutorintroduced service for news, which sounds like a dime-a-dozen
new products at Demo in Palm offering until you learn that it is trained to recognize
Desert, Calif.: Circos.com, Delver people, companies and topics and put them in context
(formerly Semingo), HealthPricer, to allow users to see what is getting the most attention
Silobreaker, Jodange and Eyealike, in news. Google could acquire this technology to get
all of which have varying degrees of attractiveness to more insight from its Google News offering.
Google. I believe some have more appeal than others. Along analytical lines, Jodange’s ToMs search software
Circos.com is a social search application that gauges the is another possibility, isolating people’s opinions about
content of each search and prioritizes results based on users’ topics to let users know who is most worth listening to.
preferences and needs. Such a hive-mind-oriented technol- This app would fit right in with Google’s enterprise
ogy could help Google better target ads for users. search products, appealing to financial and retail ana-
Would it fit with the math-based approach Google lysts. Interesting technology, but a little “nichey.” When
espouses? Maybe, but while Yahoo is socializing search, Google goes nichey, it tends to be for consumers.
I haven’t seen any inclination by Google to stray from its I’d be surprised if Google alighted on Eyealike, which
bread and butter. just launched some pretty darn accurate software that
Then there’s Delver, another social search product, detects copyrighted copy in user-generated content.
which lets users find content and people within their That comes after You Tube unveiled its own tool to
own network. Delver does this by indexing social net- weed out such content. Too much overlap? Perhaps, but
works, blogs and apps and interfacing that content with Eyealike’s copyright software is supported by the company’s
a user’s social graph to deliver targeted results. Visual Search Platform, which lets social networking site
This could be a slam-dunk both internally and exter- users search video and other pictures for content.
nally for Google, which could use the Delver technology The winner: HealthPricer. It’s too germane to what
to support OpenSocial-based sites. Google is doing not to come out on top, and, as sexy as the
HealthPricer seems tailor-made for Google. It’s a social search stuff is, there is no clear picture of how Google
health-product information search service. Google is might leverage those assets to better serve consumers.
launching Google Health this year and has invested Posted Jan. 30, 2008 8: 17 PM PST
and cards—that you just knew you were riding for a fall?
Michael Hickins: Not that everyone has enjoyed such a great ride—see
ePiphanies rising income disparities, disproportionate executive
TALKING OURSELVES bonuses and so on—but we’ve been riding pretty high
INTO RECESSION since 2002. Inflation has remained tame while productivity has continued to rise, and the housing market, well,
Did you ever have such a good the housing market ...
night that you felt you had Now the good times have come home to roost. Or
some kind of comeuppance coming to you in the morn- so we’re told. And maybe that’s exactly the trouble.
ing? Or had such a string of good luck—in both love Economists talk about deficits, [CON TINUED ON PAGE 46]