Faith Merino of Vator.tv reports, “Pinterest may have just gotten one step closer to monetizing. The company has confirmed its acquisition of visual search technology company VisualGraph, which could result in A) a stronger commerce angle, or B) ultra targeted ads. Or both! The two-man company was founded by Kevin Jing, who formerly worked on Google’s image search technology. VisualGraph was specifically designed to be applied to commerce and ‘visual shopping,’ so it seems likely that that’s how Pinterest will integrate the technology. And Pinterest is definitely raising money like a commerce company. The startup recently raised a massive $225 million round just last October, bringing its total raised to more than $550 million since 2010.” Read more
Posts Tagged ‘Pinterest’
As we prepare to greet the New Year, we take a look back at the year that was. Some of the leading voices in the semantic web/Linked Data/Web 3.0 and sentiment analytics space give us their thoughts on the highlights of 2013.
Phil Archer, Data Activity Lead, W3C:
The completion and rapid adoption of the updated SPARQL specs, the use of Linked Data (LD) in life sciences, the adoption of LD by the European Commission, and governments in the UK, The Netherlands (NL) and more [stand out]. In other words, [we are seeing] the maturation and growing acknowledgement of the advantages of the technologies.
I contributed to a recent study into the use of Linked Data within governments. We spoke to various UK government departments as well as the UN FAO, the German National Library and more. The roadblocks and enablers section of the study (see here) is useful IMO.
Bottom line: Those organisations use LD because it suits them. It makes their own tasks easier, it allows them to fulfill their public tasks more effectively. They don’t do it to be cool, and they don’t do it to provide 5-Star Linked Data to others. They do it for hard headed and self-interested reasons.
Christine Connors, founder and information strategist, TriviumRLG:
What sticks out in my mind is the resource market: We’ve seen more “semantic technology” job postings, academic positions and M&A activity than I can remember in a long time. I think that this is a noteworthy trend if my assessment is accurate.
There’s also been a huge increase in the attentions of the librarian community, thanks to long-time work at the Library of Congress, from leading experts in that field and via schema.org.
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
Nara is officially on its way from being solely a consumer-lifestyle brand – with its neural networking technology helping users find dining and hotel experiences that match their tastes – to also being the power behind other companies’ recommendation and curation offerings. This summer it made a deal with Singapore Communications’ Singtel Digital Life Division to use its technology to help their users hone in on personalized eating options, and today that online food and dining guide, HungryGoWhereMalysia, goes live.
But Singtel won’t be the only outside party to plug into Nara’s backbone, as the company today also is announcing that it is licensing its capabilities to other parties interested in leveraging them. “An enterprise can plug into our neural network in the cloud through our API,” says CEO Tom Copeman, accessing its smarts for analyzing and then personalizing tons of data from anywhere on the web, tailored to the type of service they’d like to offer.
HungryGoWhereMalaysia, for example, is much like Nara for personalized restaurant discovery here in the states, except culturally branded to their markets; local consumers will get tailored list of dining recommendations from over 35,000 restaurants throughout the country, and as the service gets to know them better, suggestions will be more finely honed to match their Digital DNA profiles. “We believe we’re the first in computer science to receive third-party data from outside sources through our API into our neural network, to make the calculations and comparisons, and send back down a more organized, personalized and targeted selections based on individual preferences.”
How can the semantic web help you participate in and celebrate Halloween this year? We trolled around and came up with a few ideas:
* Still haven’t found just the right costume yet for tonight’s festivities (for you, that is – we’re sure the kids have had theirs planned for some time). Perhaps you’re thinking hard about a do-it-yourself skeleton theme, but aren’t sure of the details for creating the most realistic effect? Well, if you head over to semantic search engine DuckDuckGo’s science goodies section, you’ll get a quick response on the number of bones in the human body, courtesy of Wolfram/Alpha computations. You can take it from there.
* OK, costume’s in check. Now how about what to do while wearing it?
Semantic search engine SenseBot might be a help here, pointing you to information it’s extracted from web pages and summarizing them in a, well, sensible way, as well as offering a cloud of the concepts it’s discovered for you to further narrow your agenda. The results can be a little off here and there, but it’s nice to have an option to further narrow a search, like one for adult activities to partake in on Halloween, to something more granular, like those designed for the “scare” factor.
Katherine Gray of Entrepreneur reports, “Pinterest, once the purview of wedding planners and overachieving parents, has become one of the most popular social sharing networks, and has been taking steps to become more of a resource for businesses. And it has a plan for its growth in the months to come. For instance, the site recently rolled out ‘rich pins’ — product pins, recipe pins and movie pins — which provide information such as price, availability and locations where users can purchase items they pin from certain retailers. Today, Pinterest is going a step further with automatic notifications for users when a product they’ve pinned goes on sale.” Read more
Instagram. Tumblr. Pinterest. The web in 2012 is a tremendously visual place, and yet, “visual media still as dumb today as it was 20 years ago,” says Todd Carter, founder and CEO of Tagasauris.
It doesn’t have to be that way, and Tagasauris has put its money on changing the state of things.
Why is dumb visual media a problem, especially at the enterprise-level? Visual media, in its highly un-optimized state, hasn’t been thought of in the same way that companies think about how making other forms of data more meaningful and reasonable can impact their business processes. A computer’s ability to assess image color, pattern and texture isn’t highly useful in the marketplace, and as a result visual media has “just been outside the realm of normal publishing processes, normal workflow processes,” Carter says. Therefore, what so many organizations – big media companies, photo agencies, and so on – would rightly acknowledge to be their treasure troves of images don’t yield anywhere near the economic value that they can.
Sarah Mitroff of VentureBeat reports that Springpad, a digital notebook service that we have covered before, has released the latest version of their service for the web, iOS, and Android. Mitroff writes, “The new version is a major overhaul of the service and includes some Pinterest-inspired design elements. We all tend to save a lot of digital information these days; it’s one of the reasons Pinterest has become so popular. But before Pinterest’s time, Evernote and Springpad were competing to be the best digital notebook to save snapshots of webpages, notes, to-do lists, and anything else you want to remember later. Springpad has become outdated in recent years, with an almost cartoony-like interface.” Read more