Will Oremus of Stuff.co.nz writes, “Google just bought a fearsome fleet of robots. The company confirmed a New York Times report that it has acquired Boston Dynamics, the Massachusetts-based maker of such noted mechanical beasts as BigDog, Atlas, Petman, Cheetah and Wildcat. The company’s robots are among the world’s most advanced two- and four-legged machines. Some are humanoid, while others resemble predatory animals. Most have been developed under contract with military agencies, including the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA. What might Google want with an army of military robots? At first gasp, the answer might seem to be, ‘conquering the world’. But that doesn’t seem to be the goal – at least, not in a military sense.” Read more
Posts Tagged ‘Google’
Jennifer Streaks of Fool.com recently wrote, “Applied Semantics was a California-based software producer for online advertising, domain name and enterprise information management markets. It was acquired by Google for $102 million in 2013. Google then used Applied Semantic’s technology to create its Google AdSense program, which brought in $3.44 billion in the last fiscal quarter of 2012 (or 27% of Google’s total revenue). That’s a return on investment you can get excited about!” Read more
According to a new post by Mariya Moeva on the Google Webmaster Blog, “Since we launched the Structured Data dashboard last year, it has quickly become one of the most popular features in Webmaster Tools. We’ve been working to expand it and make it even easier to debug issues so that you can see how Google understands the marked-up content on your site. Starting today, you can see items with errors in the Structured Data dashboard. This new feature is a result of a collaboration with webmasters, whom we invited in June to>register as early testers of markup error reporting in Webmaster Tools. We’ve incorporated their feedback to improve the functionality of the Structured Data dashboard.” Read more
Colin Jeavons of Search Engine Journal recently wrote, “Millions of people are already using semantic search and they don’t know it. Some of the world’s most popular search engines and social networking sites are using the technology to make it easier to make connections, learn, and explore interests. It’s quietly become a part of our lives, and innovative companies are pushing the technology and industry toward new horizons. So, what changed? Actually, it was users. Last year, 20 percent of Google searches were new, due to the fact that people started typing sentences and paragraphs into search engines, expecting keyword searches to operate like natural language. Today, user demands for answers to their questions are satiated with innovations like Google’s Hummingbird. People are now searching for ‘cheap flights to Miami on January 7th” rather than just ‘cheap flights.’ This change in consumer behavior is a significant milestone.” Read more
Jim Edwards of Business Insider recently speculated on Apple’s acquisition of Topsy Labs earlier this week. Edwards writes, “Why would the maker of iPads and iPhones need a small company that culls data from Twitter? The likely answer is that Apple needs help with something that is as old as the Internet itself: search. For most people, ‘search’ stopped being sexy more than 10 years ago, when Google proved that its search engine was pretty much the only one you needed. But Apple just dropped $US200 million on Topsy, likely in hopes of using Topsy’s data to improve recommendations when people search for apps and stuff in iTunes and the App Store.” Read more
Jim Edwards recently wrote an article in Seattle PI stating, “Adchemy, the Foster City, Calif., adtech startup, sold its lead generation business to XL Marketing earlier this month. So we thought it was a good time to check in with Murthy Nukala, the company’s founder and CEO, to see where Adchemy is going now. Business Insider named Adchemy one of our hottest adtech startups recently in part because the company has taken a huge amount of venture capital funding — $119 million over eight years. Its backers include Accenture and Microsoft. (For contrast, Rocket Fuel, which staged an IPO this year, had taken only $77 million before it went public.) Nukala is also a prominent brain in the adtech world: He attended both MIT and Harvard Business School.” Read more
Interested in how schema.org has trended in the last couple of years since its birth? If you were at The International Semantic Web Conference event in Sydney a couple of weeks back, you may have caught Google Fellow Ramanathan V. Guha — the mind behind schema.org — present a keynote address about the initiative.
Of course, Australia’s a far way to go for a lot of people, so The Semantic Web Blog is happy to catch everyone up on Guha’s thoughts on the topic.
We caught up with him when he was back stateside:
The Semantic Web Blog: Tell us a little bit about the main focus of your keynote.
Guha: The basic discussion was a progress report on schema.org – its history and why it came about a couple of years ago. Other than a couple of panels at SemTech we’ve maintained a rather low profile and figured it might be a good time to talk more about it, and to a crowd that is different from the SemTech crowd.
The short version is that the goal, of course, is to make it easier for mainstream webmasters to add structured data markup to web pages, so that they wouldn’t have to track down many different vocabularies, or think about what Yahoo or Microsoft or Google understands. Before webmasters had to champion internally which vocabularies to use and how to mark up a site, but we have reduced that and also now it’s not an issue of which search engine to cater to.
It’s now a little over two years since launch and we are seeing adoption way beyond what we expected. The aggregate search engines see about 15 percent of the pages we crawl have schema.org markup. This is the first time we see markup approximately on the order of the scale of the web….Now over 5 million sites are using it. That’s helped by the mainstream platforms like Drupal and WordPress adopting it so that it becomes part of the regular workflow. Read more
Barbara Starr of Search Engine Land reports, “Search is changing. It is now more personal, more engaging, more interactive and more predictive. SERPs no longer display just 10 blue links — they have become more useful and more visually appealing across all device types. Semantic search is at the forefront of these changes, as evidenced most recently by the launch of Google’s new Hummingbird algorithm. Beginning with user intent and interpretation of the query itself, semantic technology is used to refine the query, extract entities as answers, personalize search results, predict search queries and more — providing a more interactive, conversational or dialogue-based search result.” Read more
Charles Silver of Wired recently wrote, “A new battle among the tech titans has begun. What are Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Oracle, IBM and a handful of others fighting over, using vast amounts of money, hardware and top talent as weapons? This battle is over. Who will solve the scalability and performance issues of semantic computing, the data model for Web 3.0 — its arrival has been predicted annually for years but, finally, it’s on the verge. Put another way, which titan will pull off this victory feat: transforming the all-knowing ‘Star Trek’ computer—which could find the answer to any question in the universe at warp speed — from television fantasy to everyday reality.” Read more
David Amerland of Journalism.co.uk recently wrote, “The true effect of any change is measured by the depth of its impact rather than its scale. When it comes to semantic search and the semantic web however, both depth and scale become important. Google has famously announced that semantic search is the transition of search and the web from ‘strings to things’ and ‘websites to people’ respectively. To quantify this change, consider that the web is being transformed from a place where anonymity and unaccountability were virtually synonymous and practically guaranteed, to a place where trust, authority and reputation are the only attributes that really matter.” Read more
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