Juice, a Firefox browser sidebar developed by Linkool International, has launched to the public. The powerful plugin automatically culls information from around the web whenever you search for or highlight a term, making it a handy reference tool that I could quickly get used to. It also doubles as a media storage tool, allowing you to simply drag and drop videos and image files into the sidebar to save them for later.
Juice pulls from sources including Wikipedia, Google News, YouTube, and our own CrunchBase (through its API) to offer users a quick at-a-glance summary of many popular topics. The sidebar is very polished, allowing for in-line video playback and expandable text summaries, and the media storage function is intuitive.
At this point it seems that the plugin’s database is still fairly small, as many searches (even for such common terms as “Superman”) result in a notice that “Juice has learned a new keyword”. Within a few minutes these new terms are added to the database automatically, and the issue will probably be gone within a few weeks of the public beta.
Juice is the first application from Beijing-based Linkool Labs to integrate the company’s “intelligent discovery engine” which uses “natural language processing” and “a dictionary management system” to produce semantic results. It’s impossible to tell just how much processing is going on behind the scenes, but search results are generally accurate, though it’s possible to find some words that will “trick” the system.