Thursday, November 03, 2005

Google Base

For me Google Base is a dream come true. I already wrote on september 10th about the need to have something like this:

Unfortunately a group can not view QTSaver results on Furl since Furl retrieves
the web page only for the subscriber and the public can view the link to the
original page which means making the search again. Furl is restricted by
copyright regulations but I think that if there would be a place to upload pages
- and get a URI - then furling them would be possible. I told all this to Furl
in my feedback and asked whether they know about such a place/tool on the Web?Otherwise I'll have to make it all by myself.

So I decided to learn about my "dream come true" (Google Base) and used QTSaver to collect me some info. Then I thought maybe you'll also want to know about Google Base and if you read this I was right.
Google is getting ready to take the wraps off of a new service called Google Base.
Rumors surrounding this service have been spreading over the past few days, and a handful of people have managed to catch the site when it's up (it's currently down). It is not known when Google will officially launch the service, although they are holding a special invitation-only event today. Here's the text off of the front page of the site: Google Base is Google's dataBase into which you can add all types of content.
When using eBay or Craigslist, how often do you think "I wish I could search this with Google"? Recall, too, that Google has a payments service in the works. If we grant that, then let's think about the next level: a Google Base API of sorts. If Google remains the middle man, it's great for Google. Ergo, an API that would allow other sites to use Google Base could really generate a great deal of traffic.
Google has briefly commented on Google Base in a statement: "This is an early-stage test of a product that enables content owners to easily send their content to Google. Like our web crawl and the recently released Google Sitemaps program, we are working to provide content owners an easy way to give us access to their content.
Update: This is the standard list of things you can publish on google-Base:Course Schedules Events and Activities Housing Jobs News and Articles People Profiles Products Reference Articles Reviews Services Travel Vehicles Wanted Ads But you can also add you're own type of data (also private data I think). Update 26 October 22:28.
From SER: This new tool will be introduced during the 'Google Zeitgeist'05…the new micropayments service among users-- will be also introduced as a complement to 'Google Base'.
OK, so that's the "official word" from Google. However, the WSJ's Kevin Delaney…: "Google Base would let users submit information to a searchable Google database, according to images of Web pages from the service that were posted on several Web logs and which Google confirmed were legitimate.",+events,+etc./2100-1038_3-5914039.html
In a move that could put Google in competition with eBay, the search giant is testing a new service that would allow people to post and make searchable any type of content, a Google spokeswoman confirmed Tuesday. A screenshot of a page for "Google Base" gives as examples of items that can be posted to Google's server: "description of your party planning service," "articles on current events from your Web site," "listing of your used car for sale," and "database of protein structures." "This is an early stage test of a product that enables content owners to easily send their content to Google," a Google spokeswoman wrote in an e-mail. "Like our Web crawl and the recently released Google Sitemaps program, we are working to provide content owners an easy way to give us access to their content.
Other screenshots show sample pages, including an entry for a Thai Glazed Chicken Lettuce Wrap recipe. One page includes policies including "posting is not permitted for the promotion of body parts or human remains" and terms of service that give Google the right to "reproduce, modify, adapt, publish and otherwise use, with or without attribution" the content on the site for promotional purposes. It also says the Google Base interface is currently available only in English, U.
Some bloggers speculated that Google Base was the precursor to an e-commerce site that would go up against online auction company eBay. "Google's just launched 'Google Base,' a service to insert and share all types of content: events, housing, jobs, products, second-hand vehicles," a blogger called "Dirson" wrote on New Google Blog. "The information will be included in the main Google search index and other Google products like Froogle and Google Local," Dirson wrote.
Google Base is dataBase into which you can add all types of content, host your content and make it searchable online for free.
Posted by: Mike Hogan October 26, 2005 at 01:00 PM Google Base reminds me of an interesting concept I came across, called ROR (, basically it's an XML format for describing content more precisely (e.g. products, articles, people, etc) .
Google's already outsize ambitions appeared to balloon even bigger on Oct. 25 with the news that it's apparently testing something called Google Base. The test site, spotted by sharp-eyed Web surfers in Europe, indicate that Google aims to solicit people to post all manner of content on its site.
Bay may not be the only company in the way of Google Base. Newly discovered Google screenshots seem to indicate a wide range of categories of content: course schedules, events, housing, jobs, news, people profiles, reference articles, products, vehicles, travel, and more.
Google will have to break down roadblocks, though, before Google Base poses a meaningful threat to eBay or any other rivals. It appears Google Base would put Google into the content business -- that is, content it would own, not just point to. That could rankle partners, specifically the classified-ad sites such as from which Google recently has been asking for feeds.
Still, Google has a big and growing cash hoard it could use to hire the right talent, create the needed technology, or strike a deal with partners and the many upstarts already challenging Internet incumbents. If nothing else, Google Base will force a whole new swath of the business world to pay attention to the brash boys from Mountain View, Calif.
Second p0st: Microcontent and Google Base Second p0st
Hmm... looks like Google is [about to start] letting people store/publish structured microcontent on their servers.
This is quite an interesting development, as up until now, Google has been all about indexing data stored all over the web. Following that theme, one might have expected to see microcontent publishing appear in Blogger at some point... but now it seems that the intention is different; Google wants to *own* the dataBase as well as index it.
That could be a little more difficult on the edge. I wouldn’t be surprised if, down the road, many of the edge players aggregate the edge data and also export it out to Google Base (and ebay and …) and thus centralizes it on behalf of the user in order to maximize distribution. Or, on the flip side, Google can spider the edge and make that data available via their central dataBase system.
Think of Google Base as the core dataBase component for building webapps, and then allowing developers to use Google's search as well. Combine the dataBase layer with search code with your own data, and you're pretty close to having a good part of what's necessary to build a web app.
Update: 24 October 2005 (22:40)A post by shimsand over at SearchEngineWatch gives some information about what we can expect...“Google Base is Google's latest project in an effort to organize the world's information. It isn't in Beta or Alpha yet. They are still developing it. I wasn't able to get much information from my sources at Google, but I'll tell you what they told me. Basically, Google Base will present feed results on the results page. The feeds will probably be anywhere from 1-3 results, and either presented above or below the horizontal sponsored ads.”
The FAQs should be online soon too, but the page is currently just displaying, “Oops... We didn't understand that. Your [sic] have tried to access a non-existent page.”
The stampede of ebay sellers to the exit will leave the ebay site a virtual ghost town within 90 days of Google Base going live. Just like the old west when store clerks gouged miners for every penny they could get, ebay has created zero seller loyalty.
BigTable saves the Semantic Web Google Base is nothing new, but… If Google does it, everyone all of the sudden needs one. Again, I’m really not impressed by yet another todo list store, but instead by their RDF store which will be supporting this new service, BigTable (only a speculation).
NET My Services and announces that it will provide storage for everyone in the world for things such as alerts, application settings, calendar, categories, contacts, devices, documents, favorite websites, inbox, lists, locations, presence, profile, services and wallet. But if you remember correctly everyone went up in arms saying that they would never store their information on MSFT servers, so Microsoft killed it. Now Google Base will be offering a very small subset of those services (with a very small intersection with HailStorm): party planning, current events, classified ads and protein structures and everyone is so excited like if it was the first time something of this kind was being offered.

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