Brian Dear, founder and CEO of EVDB, debuted a new kind of personalized event database here at PC Forum. Based on a beta demo of the Web-based service, EVDB has all the elements you would look for in a Web 2.0 (next generation) Web application. It could be the Flickr of event data. Event information is all over the map in terms of formats, and standards don't exist for event-based services, so EVDB is aggregating and normalizing the content, and exposing it through Web services APIs. Dear views EVDB as being events-obsessed, but doesn't plan to invest in build an events portal. Instead, the startup company is focusing on helping users discover and share (community) events, and provide the tools necessary to integrate events into other applications and services.
EVDB is architected as a blog/RSS service. Each event (and subevents) is a blog entry. "We are building lots of tools to help bloggers find and share events through their own blogs," Dear said. Inspired by Wikipedia, Dear said the community of users will add event data to the system. There is some concern about malicious users flooding the system with bad data, but Dear expects to build mechanisms that help weed out abusers. EVDB will also partner closely with companies doing events, and potentially down the road with other types of commercial events, such as TV programming information and sales at department stores, for example.
Dear showed a smart calendar feature, which allows users to put an event (described in text and with a few rules, such as the location or artist) that doesn't exist into the database, which will surface such an event if it gets into the database. Dear also hopes to build an ecosystem, encouraging open source projects for desktop and mobile applications that use EVDB's indicies.
EVDB plans to make money via targeted advertising, by commercial use of its Web service APIs (others who build for-fee products using EVDB data and tools), and bounties on ticket sales. The service is free to consumers and listing events is free. Dear said the service would be available to the public by the end of March.