HonkinNews for 22 August 2017 Now Available

August 22, 2017

HonkinNews is going to take a different trajectory. Watch for details in the August 29, 2017, program. This week’s program contains “real” news; specifically, two items about eBay. Item 1: An eBay seller can bill a person looking at items who engages in a direct eBay Q&A session. No buy button click needed. No “are you sure” confirmation. Clever for the sellers and for eBay who needs the sale fees. Item 2: The other item is that if eBay corrupts a user’s date of birth, there is no user facing administrative control to find the error or correct it. Thanks, eBay. The Beyond Search goose enjoyed the one hour telephone drill to get a birthday error “fixed.” This week we report about Wired Magazine’s telling Google “enough is enough.” The videos that autoplay seems to have tipped the pro Silicon Valley publication off its inflatable round ball. Google’s annoying Wired may have been noted by Sogou, a Chinese search vendor. Sogou wants to target the US for its smart search system. Tor, we report, is mostly for good things. We agree, but there are enough interesting sites to make the Dark Web a magnet for certain types of activities. These “activities” can attract the attention of law enforcement and intelligence professionals. You can find this week’s video at this link.

Kenny Toth, August 22, 2017

HonkinNews for August 15, 2017 Now Available

August 15, 2017

This week’s HonkinNews has been whipped by the Google memo cyclone. The search and content processing news has been slammed into the emotional, subjective, political malestrom of Google management policies. We tackle this issue from the point of view of a science club member. How did Google respond to an emotional issue? Why did an unknown Googler become the digital equivalent of Lady Gaga? What do really smart people “love”? This week’s program answers these questions. Plus, you will learn about a quick and painless way to get your IBM Watson system running as quickly as a young Hussain Bolt. We reveal the fture of search. Hint: You will not have to read, which is great if you have the use of your eyeballs. If not, well, we don’t have an answer to that based on what we learned about the future of search. We reported that a blog about “real” publishers revealed what newspapers really want and need. Will a Chrysler-style bail out do the trick for this pround crew? What about a handful of SNAP cards? Even more interesting is access to at least one SOCOM team of skilled operators. Ah, newspaper publishers. Ever fascinating. We provide an insiders’ tip about Internet-enabled fish tanks. What’s fish got to do with anything? Watch and find out in the August 15, 2017, edition of HonkinNews. You can view this week’s program at this link.

Kenny Toth, August 15, 2017

HonkinNews for 8 August 2017 Now Available

August 8, 2017

The HonkinNews for August 8, 2017, is now available. Censorship caught the attention of the Beyond Search goose in early August. Virtual private networks are not faves of the authorities in China or Russia. Apple put money before principles, and Russia just took action without fooling around with mere commercial enterprises. Indonesia nixed encrypted message apps, and in Harrod’s Creek, incomplete information means happy information. Don Quixote is now on horseback, eager to slay the enterprise search dragon. The effort is an incomplete one. Important vendors are omitted from the study, and the promise of search provider revenues is a disappointment. Those search windmills remain formidable. Do we mention that the six key vendors are interesting to the good Don, but not to vendors like Elastic and more innovative next-generation findability companies? Yes, we do. Microsoft and LinkedIn may deliver information to Word users which can have some unintended consequences. For example, Bertin, the owner of the Ami Albert search technology, looks as if it is getting smaller, not growing. In addition, the look at Bertin Ami staffing, if accurate, says, “Sales is the main job as staff size shrinks.” IBM’s WKS warrants a comment. There is some naming confusion for liberal arts majors who paid attention in sociology and psychology classes. The main point is that Watson Knowledge Studio makes clear how much manual work is required to get Watson tuned up and ready to deliver useful outputs. Put on that IBM WKS happy face and get cracking. The program also includes a reference to Dark Web Notebook and captures a barn sign in Harrod’s Creek highlighting the book. You can view the program at this link.

HonkinNews for 1 August 2017 Now Available

August 1, 2017

HonkinNews noticed that minions beat the Kentucky heat by ice skating. We have a picture to document the event. A Chinese company wants to create a clone of Palantir Technologies. The technology involved includes five star ring technology plus transwarp. Beam it aboard, Scotty. Google released the results of its study of ad fraud. The surprising conclusion? Yes, there is online ad fraud. The Beyond Search goose was surprised. The program includes an update about the TechnoSecurity & Digital Forensics Conference plus a code for a 30 percent discount. Amazon’s super secret health care initiative may deliver telemedicince and a free banana to a patient’s bedside. Smartlogic announced a new semantic server and described it with a flurry of jargon. Machine learning and artificial intelligence seemed to have missed the cut. You can download this week’s video at this link.

Ken Toth, August 1, 2017.

HonkinNews for July 18, 2017 Now Available

July 18, 2017

IBM’s never-ending marketing of all things artificial captures more air time in this week’s HonkinNews. Open Text, a Swiss Army knife-like enterprise software company shifts to a new direction. Instead of marketing its proprietary search and retrieval software, Open Text has channeled IBM Watson. Open Text’s Magellan is an open source solution which looks like a “me too” product to the HonkinNews goose. This week’s program explains that Stephen E Arnold will deliver two one hour Dark Web lectures at the September 2017 TechnoSecurity & Digital Forensics Conference. HonkinNews also explains how to get information about Stephen’s new book “Dark Web Notebook.” The secret is to search Google for the words “Arnold Dark Web Notebook.” Google is back on the HonkinNews radar. No, it’s not the company’s purchase of another smart software firm. This one is in central India. Google, according to the Wall Street Journal, engages in content marketing. This means Google pays “experts” to write positive articles and reports about Google. This week’s HonkinNews includes a test to help you determine if you have what it takes to be a “real” journalist. Don’t worry. Stephen includes a hint so you can score a 100 on this tough exam. We thought Yahoo was but a memory. Wrong. Verizon seems to have diffused some Yahoot DNA through its corporate body. With the loss of some customer data, there are several million people who might wonder if Yahoot is a forever thing. You can view the video at this link.

Kenny Toth, July 18, 2017

HonkinNews for 11 July 2017 Now Available

July 11, 2017

The Honking News for July 11, 2017, takes a look at the strong growth of Dr. Michael Lynch’s Darktrace. For amusement, we compare the 6X increase in sales with Hewlett Packard Enterprise’s promise for growth. The segment concludes a bittersweet question, “Would HPE be growing in Dr. Lynch were still at yesterday’s Silicon Valley superstar?” Google’s super wonky Deep Mind artificial intelligence unit is opening an office in the vacation hot spot, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. The trip to Edmonton is a chilly breeze from Mountain View. Some of the Edmonton Googlers may be making a reverse commute to Brussels. The European Union alleges that Google has abused some folks with restrictions on trivial things like Android. Censorship continues to be a hot topic among the online crowd in the top one percent who think about irrelevancies like free speech. China may filter online rich media. No problem with that because China has a pool of 1.4 billion to scan the digital flows for bad stuff. Facebook’s approach does not focus on socialism. The social media giant wants to keep Facebookland a bright, happy place. We also cover sexual harassment from the point of view of the Beyond Search goose. You will hear shotgun blasts, see a dead goose falling to earth, and get up close and person with AirBirds and a creep hoody. Silicon Valley is a jolly place.

Kenny Toth, July 11, 2017

Video Search

July 11, 2017

Why do we not have better video search yet? Searching for a video online still requires old-school hunting around. Take your quest beyond the familiar YouTube with the MakeUseOf piece, “10 Video Sites that Are Better than YouTube.” Writer Kayla Matthews recommends Vimeo, Metacafe, Veoh, the Internet Archive, Crackle, Screen Junkies, MySpace (it still exists!), The Open Video Project. GAG, and TED (yes, as in TED Talks). Some of these are more specialized than others; see the article for details. I’m happy to see the valuable Internet Archive on this list, about which Matthews writes:

As its name suggests, Internet Archive is a web-based library of all sorts of free content, including books, music, software, and, of course, movies. Just as you might associate a physical library with doing research, one of the strengths of the Internet Archive’s video content is its vast collection of historical content. While it does also have some newer content, some of its best videos are older and obscure news reports, TV series, and movies that are typically harder to find on other sites. Like many other sites, users can also upload videos to the Internet Archive.

Meanwhile, TechCrunch looks at the recently introduced search functionality from Snapchat in, “Trying Out Snapchat’s New Universal Search Capabilities.” Reporter Anthony Ha supplies a demonstrative video, but it seems the tool is pretty straightforward. Is it an effort to address a noted weakness ahead of Snap Inc.’s much-anticipated IPO? Perhaps, but whatever the reason, it is a bit of progress in the realm of video search.

Cynthia Murrell, July 11, 2017

HonkinNews for 4 July 2017 Now Available

July 4, 2017

Bang, boom, sizzle. The Fourth of July HonkinNews reports that Palantir may be igniting an investor frenzy. We report that one real publishing outfit believes Google has be be more organized. But HonkinNews thinks that innovation is a bigger challenge to the online advertising giant. Is Google’s Area 120 going to share its sleep pods with Googlers from Area 51. We report that Facebook has what we think are censorship rules. Who is favored by these precepts? Hint: It is not native Americans. IBM Watson and IBM artificial intelligence are reevaluated by MIT’s Technology Review. Surprise! The Technology Review folks are now wondering if Watson is a marketing confection. HonkinNews reveals the “truth,” if there is such a thing in out fact-filled world. HonkinNews explains that the former Yahooligan Marissa Mayer may try to give Uber a “lyft.” Surprised at the idea. So was the Beyond Search goose. You can view the program at this link.

Kenny Toth, July 4, 2017

HonkinNews for 27 June Now Available

June 27, 2017

Excitement abounds in search and content processing. In this, the 27 June 2017 edition of HonkinNews, we report on Booz Allen’s exciting public relations challenge. First there was Snowden, then there was a pack rat stuffing top secret documents in his Maryland home. Now, the US government is investigating the once prestigious firm for tripping over its green eye shades and shirt gaiters. Attivio continues to lead the pack of search and retrieval companies in marketing innovations. We run down the jargon the 10 year old company uses to sell its “kitchen sink” solution. In addition to the old chestnut “searh,” Attivio offers natural language processing and the IBM favorite “cognitive.” IBM has found a new source of management ideas. Yahoot’s Marissa Mayer decided telecommuting was not a good thing. She implemented changes in the work from home policy and sold the company to Verizon. Now IBM is following in Yahoot’s footsteps. We ask, “What other management ideas can IBM tap for business inspiration?” If you are a Google watcher, you may find out mini-feature on Google’s reinvention of Monster.com. The ad search giant may be less interested in helping an unemployed cigarette conveyer belt repairman find work. The goal of the new Jobs service may be Microsoft LinkedIn. Enjoy the show at this link.

Kenny Toth, June 27, 2017

Legal Media Search Site Baits Pirates with Keywords

June 26, 2017

How do you attract a (media) pirate? Apparently, with targeted keywords. Torrent Freak reports, “Film Industry’s Latest Search Engine Draws Traffic with ‘Pirate’ Keywords.” Interesting tactic. Apparently a Dutch answer to Hollywood’s legal-content-finder WhereToWatch, the search engine Film.nl returns legal content. However, they’ve peppered their descriptions with keywords associated with pirated content. For example, “Don’t Wrestle With Nasty Torrents. Ignore the Rogue One: A Star Wars Story torrent.” Intriguing tactic. Reporter Ernesto writes:

Those who scroll down long enough will notice that each page has a targeted message for pirates as well. The descriptions come in a few variations but all mention prominent keywords such as ‘torrents’ and reference ‘illegal downloading’ and unauthorized streaming. …


While the piracy related messaging is unusual, it’s actually quite clever. Since a lot of people are searching for ‘torrent,’ ‘streaming’ and ‘download’ related terms combined with movie and TV-show titles, it helps to keep search traffic away from pirate sites. In other words, it’s a smart search engine optimization trick, helping it to directly compete with pirate sites on this front. The big question is whether people who search for ‘Movie X torrent’ will be satisfied with the results Film.nl offers. That said, from a movie industry perspective, it definitely beats doing nothing at all.

Does it? When prospective viewers learn their desired content is not yet legally available, we suspect most will simply navigate away to more shady destinations. Will a significant number be persuaded to wait for the legal version by Film.nl’s combination of keyword bait and moralizing? I doubt it. But it is an interesting play to note.

Cynthia Murrell, June 26, 2017

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