Live Matrix, which just launched, wants to change this. The service aims to be a TV Guide for all scheduled events on the Internet and currently indexes about 100,000 events per week.Every day, thousands of scheduled events happen on the Internet. These range from live video and audio shows to chats, poker tournaments and sales on Woot and Groupon. The problem, though, is that there is no single place to find out about these upcoming events.
Live Matrix covers a wide range of topics and formats. Unlike services like Clicker (which aims to be the TV Guide for online video), Live Matrix is format agnostic. As long as an event is scheduled, the service will index it, no matter whether it is a live video, text chat, sale, auction, product launch or a World of Warcraft tournament. As long as the event is online, it is eligible to be indexed on the site.
A TV Guide for the Scheduled Web
Earlier this week, Live Matrix's co-founders Sanjay Reddy and Nova Spivack gave us a brief demo of the service and while looking at the product, the comparison to TV Guide came up a number of times. Given that some of the core team members - including Reddy and the company's vice president of engineering Edgar Fereira - have actually worked for TV Guide in the past, this comparison is only natural. The site itself also plays on this connection, with a grid-like layout that is clearly reminiscent of TV Guide and similar online and print products.
When we first looked at the service ahead of its private beta earlier this year, we described it as "the live web's first programming guide" and as far as we can see, it is still the only service of its kind.
For the most part, Live Matrix compiles its schedule with the help of its own web crawler, but a number of services, including ESPN and eBay also provide the company with direct access to their schedules. In one of the next iterations of the tool, users will also be able to submit their own events.
Just giving users a schedule is one thing, but without reminders, most people will likely forget about future events. Because of this, Live Matrix made reminders one of the central features of the service. Not only can you create email reminders on the site itself, but Live Matrix also provides publishers and event hosts with a reminder widget for their own sites. Live Matrix plans to add text message alerts in the future and the team is also thinking about adding push alerts to a Live Matrix mobile app in the future. Soon, Reddy and Spivack told us, you will also be able to check in at the time you are attending an event.
Filling a Niche
There can be little doubt that Live Matrix fills a need that, due to the proliferation of live video and other scheduled events on the Web, could turn out to be a very lucrative market for the company. In the long run, the team also hopes to create a kind of Nielsen rating for live events and offer companies predictive analytics for scheduled events so that live video producers, for example, can plan their bandwidth capacity accordingly.
For users, Live Matrix succeeds in making previously hard to find events easily discoverable. For event hosts, this new service offers a new marketing avenue and a chance to drive more traffic to their sites. Thanks to the reminder widget, which will probably become quite popular among news organizations and bloggers, you will surely see a lot more of Live Matrix in the future - even if you don't regularly go to the site itself.