Union Square Ventures funds Adaptive Blue

Semantic web Firefox plug-in provider Adaptive Blue announced today that the company has raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Union Square Ventures.  The company’s product, called Blue Organizer, is a tagging and search tool with an incredible array of features and a focus on parsing the semantic meaning of web pages it interacts with.  Union Square Ventures is most well known for its funding of Del.icio.us prior to the Yahoo! acquisition.  The firm also invested in Feedburner.

Blue Organizer rolled out a series of substantial feature upgrades this week as well; I reviewed the previous version of the product  here in November.

Adaptive Blue is a four person company that was founded one year ago and had been self funded by founder Alex Iskold.  The company’s big break came when the Blue Organizer was selected as an official recommendation on the Firefox 2.0 add-ons page.  User downloads grew from 20k prior to that listing to 130k in November to 340k today.  It’s interesting to see that growth rate has continued since the release of the latest Firefox version.

To get a good idea of Blue Organizer’s power, I recommend either trying the browser plug-in out or reading my previous review of it.  Below is a screenshot to give you a taste of what it looks like when I was on a web page containing a music review and used Blue Organizer.  The product automatically determined that I was reading about music and what search options would be most relevant.   It’s very impressive, but my personal use of the web is focused enough on one topic that it’s topic discerning powers and vertical search are less relevant to me than they might be for more casual web users who read online about things like wine and books.