• Tim Armstrong's Secret Project Is To Turn AOL Into A Low-Cost Content Machine

    A couple days ago at the Web 2.0 Summit, AOL CEO Tim Armstrong caused a little bit of a stir when he hinted that AOL is working on a “secret” technology project. When pressed for details on what exactly it is, he was vague. But after fishing around with our sources, we have a pretty good idea. The secret project is a new content-management system (CMS) which will make it easier… Read More

  • AOL Rebrands Sphere As Surphace

    Blog content engine Sphere, which was acquired by AOL in 2008, is rebranding itself as Surphace. According to a blog post on the site, Surphace’s name is a better fit with next year’s product roadmap for the content platform. The post explains that Surphace will include the beta version of its self-serve platform S4 (it’s currently in alpha); SurphBoard, which is an… Read More

  • Public concept products hurting the bottom line?

    Conceptual products are fun. There’s no denying that. Everybody wants to see a car that looks like a jet, spaceship or rocket. Just the problem is, more often than not, the concept car does not exist in real life. A recent article by Kontra alleges that concept products are actually bad for the company, citing the success of Apple as evidence. Apple internalizes all of its concepts… Read More

  • AOL Buys Sphere's Blog Content Engine

    Tomorrow AOL will announce the acquisition of San Francisco-based Sphere, a blog content engine that launched in 2006. The price is not being disclosed, but sources are suggesting it’s in the $25 million range, or possibly a little more. More details from Om Malik When Sphere first launched as a blog search engine they were already late to the blog search game. Technorati and others had… Read More

  • Microsoft looks to turn Surface into sphere because consumers like spheres

    [photopress:msftsursph.jpg,full,center] Microsoft may be redesigning the Surface in order to make it more appealing to consumers. Current rumors point to a sphere-shaped Surface, which may or may not have been making the rounds in Redmond’s rec rooms. Apparently the thinking is that the current table-top design of the Surface isn’t consumer friendly enough, never mind the fact… Read More

  • Sweden's Twingly To Launch Europe-Focused Blog Search Engine

    At first glance, blog search as a category is oversaturated. Ok, at second glance, too. Not only did Google enter the market directly in late 2005, they’ve also increased the rate that they index blogs and other regularly updated sites for core Google search. TechCrunch, for example, is now indexed multiple times per day by Google, and new posts are often available in a normal Google… Read More

  • Video: How to turn a sphere inside out

    http://video.google.com/googleplayer.swf?docId=-6626464599825291409&hl=it Maybe you woke up today and said to yourself, “You know, I’d love to watch an online video and be made to feel like a complete dunce.” If that’s the case, then block out 20 minutes from your schedule and watch this video on how to turn a sphere inside out. I’m glad to have majored… Read More

  • Sphere Quietly Nailing Its Business Model

    Blog search engine Sphere has kept a relatively quiet profile recently. After a private beta launch in late 2005 and a big-press full launch in the spring of 2006, they’ve kept mostly to themselves. Instead of focusing on building a better blog search engine (an area that Google now dominates after a recent Technorati refocus), Sphere has spent its time developing technology that… Read More

  • New Sphere Focuses On Connections Between News Stories

    When blog search engine Sphere launched in May 2006, it included a unique feature that discovered, on the fly, stories related to what you were reading regardless of whether or not the two stories were hyperlinked. The feature, called “Sphere It,” has grown in popularity and has helped Sphere get itself embedded in top blogs and news sites. We include a Sphere It link at the bottom… Read More

  • The LaunchPad 13 at Web 2.0 Summit

    The annual Web 2.0 Summit kicked off today at the Palace Hotel in San Francisco. The conference Summit, which has been sold out for months, is noticeably larger than last year and hundreds of people are milling about, seeing and being seen. The highlight of last year’s conference for me was LaunchPad, where thirteen young startups showed their stuff to the audience. See our coverage… Read More

  • Sphere Nails Long Term Deal With About.com

    San Francisco-based Sphere’s only been around for three months, but it’s already locked down two important deals. Both deals leverage its “Sphere It” technology, which performs a semantic analysis on the text within the page being searched and returns blog results that it finds relevant to the article. In May we wrote about Sphere’s deal with Time.com. Next… Read More

  • Time.com Adds "Sphere It" Links

    San Francisco-based blog search engine Sphere is less than a month old, and already has links to its “Sphere It” functionality embedded in a number of time.com articles (example). Tony Conrad, Sphere’s CEO, says that they are currently testing the feature with Time.com. The links are prominently placed below the headlines of articles and link directly to Sphere blog… Read More

  • New Blog Search Engine Sphere Launches

    New blog search engine Sphere launched just moments ago and has also announced a $3.75 million round of venture financing. In addition to covering the launch of Sphere here, we have a podcast interview with CEO Tony Conrad and advisor Toni Schneider over at TalkCrunch. Sphere, which follows in the footsteps of previous blog search engines like Feedster, Technorati and IceRocket, as well as… Read More

  • First Screen Shot of Sphere

    Company: Sphere
    Launched: Private Beta Launch this Weekend
    Status: Funded by Doug MacKenzie, Kevin Compton, Phil Black, Will Hearst, David Mahoney, Vince Vannelli and Mike Winton
    Previous Post: October 8, 2005
    Location: Palo Alto I met with Tony Conrad, one of the founders of Sphere, today at our office (ok, its a house, but it’s also an office – just ask the IRS). Sphere is a… Read More

  • Will Sphere Solve the Blog Relevance Problem?

    Om Malik writes about Sphere, a new blog search service that appears to be getting ready to launch. Sphere is taking a crack at building a more relevant blog search engine. Traditional link analysis just doesn’t work with blog posts because new posts don’t have time to gather links. Instead, Sphere seems to be be trying to determine blog authority on a given subject area, and… Read More