ITNorthWest Voice

This is a blog for all the technology entrepreneurs based in the North West of Ireland - musings about our business, companies, interests, trends and any other random thing that hits us.

Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Tablane -- Eating Our Tails

There are now thousands, tens of thousands, of references to our browser company Tablane on Google, MSN and Yahoo. Good news you might think. The references fall into two categories: References to about 7 original blog entries, including this one, and our regularly changed Google Adword copy turning up on a big bunch of 3rd party sites. None of the 3rd party sites carrying our Adword entry have any direct editorial bearing on Tablane at all. Meanwhile, the original blog entries are being linked to and replicated across dozens and dozens of blog aggregation sites, with little or no fresh editorial overlay. If every advertiser on Google is getting distributed this way, and if every reference is being stored on Google servers, what are the implications for Google's qualitative performance over time? Similarly, if the dense smog of blog data is spawning aggregators of aggregators of aggregators, what are the implications for deriving any sort of quality from blog trawls. I was lucky enough to hear Tim Berners-Lee speak in Galway on Monday at the Information Juggernaut event hosted by the Digital Enterprise Research Institute . The theme was the 'Semantic' Web, briefly summarised as being about linking data objects, rather than documents. The concepts are fascinating, but I couldn't help feeling that this innovation as it takes hold will only deepen the digital gloom. What does it matter if Google or any other technology can generate a search response in milliseconds, if you then have to spend half an hour trawling through duplications, reduplications and rereduplications of content looking for the original, the authentic and the interesting? The quest for quality of data is presenting itself to us as the real Internet challenge. Our browser product is one tiny step towards this objective, because our Collection technique, is, in fact, a method of assembling an editorialised result of search. Sharing and collating these editorialised views is our real business opportunity. How to exploit it? Hmmmm.....

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