Frederic lardinois

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Confirmed: Microsoft Acquires Powerset

Confirmed: Microsoft Acquires Powerset

We wrote about Microsoft possibly acquiring semantic search engine Powerset just a few days ago when it was still a rumor. Today, both Microsoft and Powerset have confirmed that they have reached a deal. When rumors about this acquisition first appeared, the price for Powerset was supposed to be somewhere around $100 Million, though neither company…

Commuto: Community-Based Online Trading

Commuto: Community-Based Online Trading

Commuto puts an interesting spin on trading real world goods on the Internet. Clearly, it would be extremely hard for any start-up to be successful in this space when the likes of eBay and Craigslist having pretty much become synonymous with online trading already. Commuto, however, doesn’t go head to head with these giants – instead, it focuses on…

Mozilla Releases Weave 0.2: Filling in for Browser Sync

Mozilla Releases Weave 0.2: Filling in for Browser Sync

Not too long ago, Google announced that it was going to stop the development of its Browser Sync project. Browser Sync automatically synchronized bookmarks between different computers. Mozilla just announced a new version of its own bookmarks synchronization product, Weave, which was first announced last December as a Mozilla Labs product. Its…

Pluribo: Instant Summaries of Amazon Reviews

Pluribo: Instant Summaries of Amazon Reviews

Pluribo is a Firefox plugin that displays short summaries of product reviews on Amazon.com. Pluribo scans through reviews customers on Amazon have left and automatically creates a one sentence summary that is somewhat akin to a Zagat review. While Zagat uses human editors to compile its reviews, though, Pluribo is fully automated. Right now…

Google Rebrands Performics: Launches Affiliate Network

Google Rebrands Performics: Launches Affiliate Network

Today, Google announced that it is rebranding DoubClick’s Performics Affiliate as the Google Affiliate Network.  Google acquired DoubleClick in March 2008 for $3.1 Billion. The Google Affiliate Network is not yet integrated into Google’s AdSense and will continue to be hosted at ConnectCommerce.com for the time being. Companies currently…

Rhapsody Embraces DRM-Free MP3s: Another Nail in The Coffin of DRM

Rhapsody Embraces DRM-Free MP3s: Another Nail in The Coffin of DRM

Real Networks’ Rhapsody music service, which had only been a subscription service so far, is joining into the every expanding fray of music services selling DRM-free MP3 files. Real has signed deals with Universal, Sony BMG, Warner, and EMI to sell songs at $.99 cents a song and $9.99 per album.

By embracing DRM-free MP3s as its format of…

Grou.ps Raises $1.1 Million And Goes Open Source

Grou.ps Raises $1.1 Million And Goes Open Source

The San Francisco based social groupware provider Grou.ps announced today that it has secured a Series A round of financing for $1.1 Million in a deal led by Golden Horn Ventures. Grou.ps has also announced that it is open sourcing a restricted version of its code under the Affero Public License.

Grou.ps aims to provide users with a…

Smashbuys: Popurls for Stuff

Smashbuys: Popurls for Stuff

Some ideas are either so good (or so easy to copy), that it’s only a matter of time before they have been cloned so many time that they become cliché. Popurls was exactly such an idea – a simple web site that aggregates headlines from various Web 2.0 blogs and social media sites.

The latest Popurls clone is Smashbuys: a site that displays the top…

Rumor: Microsoft to Acquire Powerset for $100 Million

Rumor: Microsoft to Acquire Powerset for $100 Million

Venturebeat reports that Microsoft might be close to acquiring the San Francisco based semantic search engine Powerset for about $100 Million. No announcement has been made yet by either party. We contacted Microsoft, but did not get an answer beyond “Microsoft does not comment on rumors or speculation.” We will update this post once we receive…

ICANN Proposes Sweeping Changes to TLDs

ICANN Proposes Sweeping Changes to TLDs

The Wall Street Journal reports that the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is considering sweeping changes to the way top-level domains (TLDs) are assigned. Under this newly proposed plan, any organization could apply for any top-level domain (ICANN calls these new domain names generic TLDs). Google, for example, could get…

PicLens: Now With Amazon Integration and YouTube Videos

PicLens: Now With Amazon Integration and YouTube Videos

Cooliris’ PicLens is, without a doubt, one of the prettiest browser add-ons currently available. When we first reviewed it in February, Josh Catone called it ‘nifty’ and ‘gorgeous.’ Both of these adjectives still fully apply to PicLens, but since then, the company has added a large number of new features. These include a stronger emphasis on…

Facebook has Friendfeed Envy: Adds Comments to Mini-Feed

Facebook has Friendfeed Envy: Adds Comments to Mini-Feed

According to a post on the Facebook blog, Facebook will add the ability to comment on items in the Mini-Feed today, making it even more similar to Friendfeed. Within the last few months, Facebook started to allow users to aggregate their items from various external social media, photo, and bookmarking sites such as Flickr, del.icious, and…

Mixx Wants You to Build a Community

Mixx Wants You to Build a Community

Social news site Mixx introduced a new feature today: Mixx Communities. Mixx always had a strong emphasis on ‘groups,’ but the Mixx Communities take this to a different level by offering a higher degree of customizability and a stronger emphasis on communication between group members.

There has been a recent trend of allowing groups of users to…

Evri Beta Launches: Search Less – Understand More

Evri Beta Launches: Search Less – Understand More

Evri, a Paul Allen backed semantic search engine, is launching into a limited beta tonight. Evri was first shown publicly at the D6 conference. Evri’s CEO Neil Roseman likes to talk about Evri in terms of organizing content instead of calling it a search engine. At its core, however, Evri definitely is a search engine, though it adds a very…

Kindling: Digging for Small Companies and Groups – 50 Invites

Kindling: Digging for Small Companies and Groups – 50 Invites

New York based technology and consulting firm Arc90 introduced its first publicly available product today: Kindling. Arc90 describes Kindling as an “idea management and collaboration tool for small groups and companies.” A more straightforward way to describe it would be as a version of Digg or reddit for small groups. Unlike those sites…

Setbacks for Google’s Android

Setbacks for Google’s Android

The first phones using Google’s Android platform were meant to go to market by the second half of this year. According to the Wall Street Journal, however, Google is facing some major setbacks thanks to the intricacies of the cell phone business.

Facebook Targets Chinese Market

Facebook Targets Chinese Market

Social networking site Facebook has launched a Chinese-language version of its web site. Users logging into the site from the Chinese mainland are now being redirected to zh-cn.facebook.com, where users can choose between a version in simplified or traditional Chinese.