Melbourne-based tech startup Feedcorp today
launched a new search engine with a distinct focus on providing
access to Australian content.
Dubbed "gnoos" and accessible here, the search engine is
Feedcorp's answer to international services like Technorati and
Google Blog Search. gnoos indexes blogs as well as traditional
online news services.
Blogs are personal or corporate Web sites with sequential
entries typically written in an informal style. They normally use
the Really Simple Syndication (RSS) format also used by more
traditional news sites to syndicate their content.
Feedcorp founder Ben Barren told ZDNet Australia early last month gnoos would provide Australians with a better sense of "the real conversation happing in the local and global blogosphere" than local competitors Google Australia, Sensis or Yahoo7.
Today Barren said the launch was exciting, but
claimed the company had a lot more than just search planned.
"We don't want to be just a "Aussie blog search engine"
though, as important as it is to provide that service," he told
ZDNet Australia via e-mail.
"Based on what we have in development at Feedcorp, we are
approximately 15 percent of the way through our product
Barren said mainstream media was "finally" catching on to the
potential of blogs and RSS feeds.
"Global blogs and media also have the best content in areas
like technology and entertainment," he said.
With this in mind, the aim was for gnoos to do more than just
Australian blog search. "With gnoos, we really want it to be the place that documents
the overall conversation happening that affects Australians
today," Barren said.
"We don't want to be as much a search engine as a personalised
dashboard for people to manage their local and global content
subscriptions, as well as participating in a community a'la the
Flickr model." Flickr is a popular Yahoo-owned Web site for sharing photos.
Barren said the RSS format had already started to move beyond
its initial use in blogs.
"Already we are indexing hundreds of Aussie podcasts from
Triple J, MMM, Nova, ABC, Fox and TP [the Podcast Network] as
well as videos from YouTube and vSocial," he said.
"For example, there is a great video going around on YouTube
of Gretel Killeen's now famous interview with Michael "The
(recently evicted) Insider" where Gretel lost it at him on Live
Big Brother TV."
"An Aussie blog -- Inside Big Brother -- highlighted this
story (and YouTube video) and there are the sort of stories we
want to break with gnoos," Barren concluded.