Friday, March 18, 2005


a free lunch is often flavored with spam

Anyone seen those handy free iPOD ads? Ever wonder how that whole thing works? A few months ago I checked one out and helped inundate my hotmail account with even more spam than usual. In short, the way the offers basically work is to have you signup up for numerous types of ads, fill out numerous lead forms (for products or services you probably don't want), and make purchases or start subscriptions that will cost you money if you don't cancel them right away. In the end it is very hard to actually get a free iPOD (or Sarbucks Card, or whatever) without spending any money at all.

In my case I gave up, but this guy didn't and he has some really interesting insights into how the program works.


the simple act of manipulating search results

"The search engines created the monster. It only exists because Google's algorithm places a lot of emphasis on link popularity."

Search Engine Optimization expert Greg Boser explains in this article how he manipulates linking loopholes in Search Engines to drive his clients to the top of the search results. Very good read with good perspective into how big this industry is and how much impact they have on the search results you see.

Thursday, March 17, 2005


the promise of vertical search

Just found a cool article talking about Vertical Search. For the record, vertical search engine are search engines that target a specific type of content, such as jobs or real estate. The irony is that I once helped build a vertical search engine. It was going along pretty good until it ran into legal problems.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


how to start a start up

I just need to say that this is one of the best "get real, you can do it" articles I have ever read.


msn to display search ads based on who you are

“Microsoft's paid search platform will provide detailed -- but not personally identifiable -- information, such as gender, age and location, for many people who use its search engine, allowing advertisers to target their ads to a specific audience.”

From the sound of things this will apply if you login to Hotmail or other MSN portal applications. My big question, will just using MSN Messenger authenticate you against their ad placement software? If so I could see myself slowly switching to a less spyware like product (ICQ anyone?)


Tuesday, March 15, 2005


yahoo invites users to predict search trends

Yahoo Research Labs has just introduced a new online game called the Buzz Game. The idea is that you "buy" or speculate on stocks (as in fantasy stocks) represented by technology trends, and if the trend does well on Yahoo's Search Engine then your stock will go up.

For example, I purchased 161 shares of MySQL because I think its fortunes will only continue to improve as more and more companies explore free and open source solutions to commercial products. If more people search for MySQL on Yahoo then my investment will pay off and I can sell that stock and buy stock in another trend.


online poker, viagram, and other terms googlebombed

So it seams bloggers are getting back at comment spammers by linking popular terms to helpful resources such as Wikipedia. Read the full details here.

For the record, a google bomb is the act of linking the same search term (online marketing for example) to the same url and putting that link on as many web pages as possible. If enough web pages (personal sites, blogs, etc) join the bomb then the website will get a page rank bounce and may end up at the top of the results.

Probably the most famous example is the search term miserable failure which currently has three results that do not even contain the term, but have been bombed to the top so as to make political statements.

Monday, March 14, 2005


what yahoo can do to compete with google

TCS has a great read explaining how Yahoo can take on Google in the Adsense market. The thing that interests me would be the creation of other payout models beyond simply pay-per-click. I think that, depending on the ad, payout per view or per lead would be much more attractive both to certain advertisers and to certain publishers.


yahoo toolbar goes RSS

Yahoo has just introduced RSS detection into their toolbar in order to allow you to add a feed to My Yahoo with just one click. While it is a nifty feature I still can't decide if I like having my RSS feeds collected onto a web page or into my bookmarks folder (as you can do easily with Firefox).

Here is the blog post: Yahoo! Toolbar Gets to Know RSS

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