October 27, 2008

My Latest Project: Local Search Canada

In case you’ve been wondering what I’ve been working on, it’s a Canadian local search company called weblocal.ca.

It is based on the YellowBot platform and I’m really excited about it’s launch. There is a contest there so make sure to go an enter the contest and review locations!

In any case, I’ll be traveling this week to Montreal. If you think you’d like to meet up or there is some sort of tech/startup meetup, make sure to let me know!

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October 21, 2008

Mapquest iPhone Site Launches

Mapquest announced that they launched their iPhone/iPod touch site.

I went to check it out. Just go to their homepage with an iphone and you’ll be taken there automagically.

The web-based application is pretty slick, acting like Google’s app that sits on the deck by allowing you to use your finger to pan around, etc. Other than a bit of lag time during some requests, I’m surprised it hasn’t crashed on me yet…Safari tends to be fickle with lots of sites utilizing enough javascript. I do, however, wish that they pre-populated the forms based on prior searches (conducting a map lookup then going to the directions page, or vice versa, loses your input). They also solved another issue I’ve had with the iPhone…clearing out the form. Check out the “x” inside the input form elements that you can click to clear the form. Good work, guys!

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October 16, 2008

Remembering Jon Postel

Vint Cerf wrote about Jon Postel a decade after he passed.

I worked with Jon at USC/ISI and he was a great man with lots to teach. I was still working there when he passed away and there was not one person in the entire office with a dry eye.

Anyway, check out the article. Many people know who Vint is but Jon insisted on working in the background and keeping his privacy so you probably don’t know a lot about him.

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October 15, 2008

What is a Pagerank 9 Site Worth To You?

Sorry, readers…I know it has been a while but I have been hard at work on another project related to YellowBot. Stay tuned to find out more about what that is…In the meantime, I’m hoping I can resume blogging regularly…

So I was looking at the Clearspring acquisition of AddThis.

AddThis is 2 years old and provides a bookmarking widget that you must have seen all over the place (see the “Bookmark” button at the bottom of this post). The AddThis homepage boasts “served 20 billion times per month” and lists the following as “Clients & Partners:”

TIME, Oracle, TechCrunch, Freewebs, Entertainment Weekly, Topix, Lonely Planet, MySpace, PGA Tour, Tower Records, Squidoo, Zappos, FOX, ABC, CBS, Glamour, WebMD, American Idol, HitsLink, Widgetbox, Template Monster, GetAFreelancer, ReadWriteWeb, Brothersoft, E! Online, iGuard

AddThis widgets/Links are everywhere. It’s no surprise it is a pagerank 9!

When Clearspring, the widget company, acquired them, do you think that discussion came up? Cleaspring increased its reach online but how many visitors, as a ratio of its overall traffic, actually go to the homepage? Users see the widget, some click on a link and are redirected to the appropriate bookmarking service. Site owners might log in to their account to see traffic and statistics. In any case, I’m not sure what Clearspring paid for the acquisition but it was probably a smart buy considering its popularity and traffic levels.

from AllThingsD:

But Ted Leonsis, chairman of the board at Clearspring, and CEO Hooman Radfar said revenue would come via advertising and, eventually, valuable data analytics the services collect about Web behavior.

Currently, said Leonsis, AddThis has negligible revenue and Clearspring has about $10 million in annual sales. Neither is currently profitable.

Clearspring has about 100 employees and AddThis has a handful. I have not seen any articles about AddThis getting funded and Clearsping has received $35 million.

ShareThis is a similar service that some people like better because it also allows sharing via email (in addition to other services). It’s currently a pagerank 7 and has been funded, receiving a total of $21 million.

So what would you have paid to acquire AddThis (with a pagerank 9, even if they lost some traffic over the last few months) and put your link(s) at the bottom of their page?

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