Neil Thackray’s Business Media Blog

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Exalead and Vertical Search

Robert Brown of Exalead is arguing that publishers come from an online world and struggle with the online world.  The future is online and this must drive the business but this is difficult for most publishers.  Search he argues is the key to unlocking the value of content.  The old business models do not transfer well to the online world.  Selling ads is not enough. Premium content is incremental revenue.

Exalead believes that vertical search solutions can uncover the value of data.  But we need to move beyond basic search.  The key drivers are devloping smart growth, accelerating innovation, gaining traction and protecting shareholder value.

The key is make oonline a profit centre not a cost centre, We need to be faster at utilisation of new technologies.  Content is all  over the organisation but it is non standard format and fragmented.  We have to abandon offliine legacy mindsets where we believe online is like print. We need to search in way which combines unstructured and structured data.  Imagine a web site which combines blogs, reviews, maps.  Which is the most reviewed restaurant, which is the most favoured.  Weight can be attached to the provenance of articles to maintain editorial control.  What about a next generation proframme guide for TV?  Why can’t this be searched in the same way as we do on Google?  Run the BBC homepage and then run it through Google to create related and faceted terms he suggests.  This “wikification” enables you to build up a taxonomy or dictionary of terms and their relationships.

He argues that his solution to semantic analysis of structured and unstructured date is now relatively cheap to deploy in hardware terms.  Content is not king – if it was then the content owners would be wining right now and they are not.

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May 19, 2009 - Posted by | Uncategorized

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