As so often happens in R&D, following a single thread can take you somewhere special and all consuming. That’s what has happened by looking into social discovery. I have committed to this effort, formalized a new company, Lucky Oyster, secured funding, and we are off to the races! Continue following this effort at both http://www.luckyoyster.com/ as well as http://blog.luckyoyster.com/. For a bit of background, have a gander at the piece in geekwire: http://www.geekwire.com/2012/exmarchex-exec-lands-cash-lucky-oyster-takes-bing-google-social-search/ . Now, to dive deep and discover pearls….
Based on a study of ~1.3 billion URLs crawled by Common Crawl in 2012:
- 22% of Web pages contain Facebook URLs
- 8% of Web pages implement Open Graph tags
- Among ~500m hardcoded links to Facebook, only 3.5 million are unique
- These are primarily for simple social integrations
Over the past two months, I’ve become very excited about what I call “social discovery”: leveraging what a person’s social network already knows to help them find and discover new ideas, places and things; and new technologies that make social networking more useful to learning about the world.
Our networks know far more than we’d ever give them credit for. For the next six weeks, my intent is to explore the intersections between semistructured content, social interaction, and network knowledge. It’s a massive field, but largely untouched outside of the giants (G, F, B). I believe this research can lead to kinds of search we today can’t even imagine. More to come!
Over the past six weeks, I’ve been exploring a theme I term “coordinated messaging”. This means leveraging technology to make our real world lives more efficient and secure. In this vein I’ve turned on three experiments:
- Reachable (http://reachable.me/) - a dynamic emergency contact system that helps deliver urgent messages to consumers by coordinating multiple contact channels, on both the in- and out-bound: Web, email, SMS, phone, Twitter and Facebook.
- Toduo (http://toduo.org/) - pair productivity to help partnerships thrive. I built this primarily out of a personal need to help keep my own life partnerships on track, and it’s turned out to be a life saver.
- SaferDater (http://www.saferdater.org/) - automated check-in and alerting system for people heading into potentially risky situations. Think dating, climbing, hiking, road trips, etc.
There has been some great early feedback on these experiments, and for the next few months I’ve put them in the hands of colleagues to help understand how they should evolve, what direction they should go in, etc.