iGlue, which wants to “wikify the web“, has officially launched its semantic content organizer and search application.
Three years in the making before being unveiled at TechCrunch Europe’s GeeknRolla event in London last April, iGlue creates an additional information layer over web pages by using natural language technology to understand its content. The browser plug-in or bookmarklet recognises names of relevant entities in text, such as people, geographical locations, institutions etc. and then when a user rolls their mouse over those entities, displays related information, images and videos.
However, where iGlue perhaps comes into its own is that users can contribute to this structured data via the plug-in’s annotation tool by entering their own entries and data, potentially turning any website into a Wikipedia-like resource, hence the “wikify the web” description used by the company.
One of the more clever ways that iGlue structures its data and accepts user contributions is that the system takes account of the relationships that entities can have. So, for example, an annotation for the Swedish pop group ABBA shows not just information about the group as a whole but also entries for each individual band member, such as their bio etc.
It’s perhaps curious, however, to see in4 (the Budapest startup behind iGlue) use its technology first to roll out a consumer-facing product when there are obvious enterprise opportunities in the ability to essentially turn any website or Intranet into a semantically-powered Wiki. That said, it’s not uncommon to see startups use a consumer play more as a shop window or proof of concept for the technology.
It’s also not hard to see how highly targeted and relevant ads could be integrated as part of the structured data that pops up when a user rolls over a certain entity. So it’s possible that an ad play also represents another opportunity for iGlue.