Monday, January 30, 2006

Internet Search Statistics from China

I dug something interesting today. I was trying get some info from Baidu via BabelFish. And I bumped into a goldmine of statistics. It is similar to Google Zeitgeist; but the statistics are restricted to Baidu only. It gives you an idea of what 100 million Internet users in China have been searching for. There are lots of "Top 10" search terms in dozens of categories.

Sounds interesting? Well like always, you may have to take all those numbers coming out of the Middle Kngdpm with a pinch of salt!

Here's Baidu's very own zeitgeist

P.S: Since it is translated through BabelFish, availability is not assured !!

Friday, January 27, 2006

Mittal launches €18.6bn offer for rival Arcelor

The acquistion guru Lakshmi Mittal has done it again! But it may not be going be easy this time, because the company he is trying to gobble up is none other than his rival Arcelor, world's second largest steel maker.

Mittal is offering €18.6, which values Arcelor share at €28.21, a 27 per cent premium over last night’s closing price.

If the deal comes through, then Mittal will be reaching the 100 tonne mark easily, leaving behind Nippon Steel way behind.

Here's more on this from FT: Mittal launches €18.6bn offer for steel rival Arcelor

Monday, January 23, 2006

China building its own Sun!

This will surprise even those who are familiar with the extra-ordinary ways in which Middle Kingdom is trying to conquer the world! If you believe a news story carried in Xinhua, then you might as well be prepared to live in world where China will have its own Sun!! Here's an excerpt from Xinhua article:

It was learned from the Hefei Institutes of Physical Science of the Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS) that it will have completed the Experimental Advanced Superconducting Tokamak (EAST) which aims to explore infinite and clean energy resources of nuclear fusion by this March or April.

By then, Hefei will become the first institute in the world to have built an all-superconducting non-circular section nuclear fusion experiment facility, which is generally known as an artificial sun.

It will take quite some time and effort to find out whether it’s the usual communist propaganda or some real advance in technology.
Here’s the complete article: China to complete world's 1st artificial sun

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Is Yahoo Acquiring SearchFox Assets?

As everyone was wondering about sudden decision of Searchfox to shut shop, there seems to be some hope for their technology. In a recent post, TechCrunch syas that Yahoo is acquiring the assests of SearchFox. It says:

Reliable sources are reporting that SearchFox, which announced
that it will be shutting down
as of January 25, 2006, has sold its assets to
Yahoo. At least some of the employees have moved over to Yahoo as well.

Here's the complete story: Yahoo Acquires SearchFox Assets

Wednesday, January 11, 2006

SearchFox will shut down on January 25

So here comes the first casualty (that I witnessed) of the Web 2.0 bubble !! SearchFox has announced that it's closing down. The services will be stopped on January 25. Here's the excerpt from the mail sent to SearchFox users:
Thanks for all your help in making SearchFox what it is. We have enjoyed
providing this service, and hope that you have enjoyed using it. Please export
all of your links and an OPML file with your RSS sources before the site shuts
down. In accordance with our privacy policy, we will delete all personal
information on January 25 after we shut down the services.

You can find the same message posted on SearchFox blog here:

Well it rather came as a surprise.. although Web 2.0 is getting hyped up too much, I thought RSS world had some true potential.. we will have wait till sleuths are out to find out the reason for the shut down... till then, those million other geeks wanting to build the next best RSS reader/aggregator should think again!

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

For all those Web 2.0 inventors: Don’t Blow Your Beta

Here's a ncie piece of advice from Michael Arrington of TechCrunch about how not to blow up your beta.
Certainly there is no set recipe for success (or failure). But there are a number of easy-to-avoid traps when building and presenting a product. Likewise, there are a number of “crowd pleaser” features that always get positive comments.

Very true!!! You can read the full article here: Don’t Blow Your Beta

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

retrievr: Out-of-the-box way of seaching images on Flickr

Have you heard of "retrievr" ? I am sure most you haven't; so did I til a few moments ago. But once I discovered it, I am not able to take my hands off it! Its so addctive.. Ok..I will tell you what it is. In the words of the people who created it, retrievr is

an experimental service which lets you search and explore in a selection of Flickr images by drawing a rough sketch.

Currently the index contains many of Flickr's most interesting images. If you'd like to have your images (or the images for a specific tag) added, please let me know. A submission interface is planned!

Well that pretty much sums up what it is. What it does is, it fetches the images (from flickr) that are similar to the one drawn by you on the canvas. Pretty cool, eh? Though retrievr's "image recognition" capabilities are far from being perfect, it is a fresh and interesting (intelligent?) approach in image search. Well actually it can go beyond image search and can offer solutions in dozen other areas like image recognition, authentication, etc.

Try it over here:

Before You Set Up Shop in China..

China continues to attract thousands of businessmen from across the world. Everyone is lured by its cheap labor and vast market. But it’s not all that rosy if you look at some of the big names like PepsiCo and Microsoft which have are yet to reap benefits in the Middle Kingdom.

There’s more such cautious advice in this article from Business Week.

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