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Google Acquires Metaweb

TMCnews Featured Article

July 19, 2010

Google Acquires Metaweb

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

Google (News - Alert) has acquired Metaweb – a company that maintains an open database of things in the world – in an apparent move to improve its search results.

Freebase – Metaweb’s free and open database of over 12 million things – includes such items as movies, books, TV shows, celebrities, locations, and companies.

Google and Metaweb plan to maintain Freebase as a free and open database. They also plan to contribute to and further develop Freebase, and want other web companies to use and contribute to the data.

By improving Freebase, it will make the web richer for everyone, says Jack Menzel, Google’s director of Product Management, in a recent blog posting.

In addition, Freebase will get even more open. Freebase has increased the frequency of its downloadable database dumps from quarterly to weekly.

“We believe that the more we can all work together on cataloging and connecting the ‘graph of everything,’ the smarter the web will get,” according to a posting on the Metaweb site.

As for the Metaweb product line, the company will continue to support all existing partners, but won’t be taking on new ones while working with Google to deliver new ways to make the web smarter by linking content with entities.

Metaweb helps site owners, bloggers, and developers make their sites richer and more engaging. Based in San Francisco, Metaweb Technologies was founded in 2005 to help build a smarter, more connected Internet. Since then, the company has been building the platform and populating the data for its content integration network, which enables site owners, publishers and developers to add content from across the Web.

In other Google news, Google’s Goggles visual search application is coming to Apple's iPhone (News - Alert). Google officials are also saying the image recognition technology that powers Goggles via APIs will be released “by the end of the year,” according to TMCnet.

Ed Silverstein is a contributing editor for TMCnet's InfoTech Spotlight. To read more of his articles, please visit his columnist page.

Edited by Ed Silverstein

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