Interview with Andreas Wacker, creator of BlogsNow
TechAddress: Tell me a bit about your company, what it does and what’s your value proposition?
BlogsNow: BlogsNow is a meme tracker. It follows the discussions of all weblogs that use one of various ping services. Constantly it calculates the emerging topics in all of these weblogs by ‘simply’ calculating who gained the most links in the last hours.
TechAddress: What makes your company stand apart from your competitors?
BlogsNow: The first round of tools (Blogdex, Daypop, popdex and the likes) are all defunct. BlogsNow is the only tool that uses a vast number of blogs (Memeorandum only looks at the ‘a list’) and treats all (non-spam) target links equally (Tailrank does a fine job in listing news items).
TechAddress: What are some of the main features?
BlogsNow: One constantly updated page that reflect the current state of millions of blogs. It’s spam free, which also means that the code roots out all those planted stories that have no natural traction.
TechAddress: Who’s your target customer or audience?
BlogsNow: Anybody who would like to have a complete overview of the current discussions on weblogs.
TechAddress: Any new things in particular that you’re working on right now?
BlogsNow: Keeping the service spam free.
TechAddress: Where do you see your company heading in the future?
BlogsNow: It’s riding along the blogosphere like a surfer rides a wave. Looking at predictions from a couple of years ago it should be clear that it’s unpredictable how things will develop. BlogsNow will adapt to the changing state of blogs as long as it makes sense.
TechAddress: Any negative feedback or criticism regarding technology and services?
BlogsNow: Spam is using 75% of my resources, both in raw hardware and in development time.
TechAddress: So what would you say is the guiding principle behind your company?
BlogsNow: Making a page that helps me to stay on top of what is going on.
TechAddress: What is the mission of your company and what are you bringing to the market that is innovative?
BlogsNow: Reflecting objectively and unbiased the flow of topics in Weblogs right now. The actual concept is not new, but the implementation is unmatched.
TechAddress: Where are you in terms of funding and your lifecycle?
BlogsNow: BlogsNow contradicts the usual models: There is no outside funding. These days technology is advanced and cheap enough that a single person can create a service that is unmatched. In other words, I think I can afford to run and maintain BlogsNow for a long time.
TechAddress: If your technology or service is not formally launched yet, when’s the launch date?
BlogsNow: BlogsNow started crawling in April 2004. The first pages were served in May of that year. Since then there have been 3 complete rewrites, an equal amount of major redesigns of the user interface aside from constant code changes.
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