Wednesday, December 21, 2005


Amazon's Alexa: a serious contender in Web 2.0?

Amazon's market capitalization is no where near the stratosphere occupied by Google. It's seen as a serious online e-commerce player.

It has been developing a few tools that hint at broader play in the web 2.0 space.

The Alexa Web Search Platform provides public access to the vast web crawl collected by Alexa Internet. Users can search and process billions of documents -- even create their own search engines -- using Alexa's search and publication tools. Alexa provides compute and storage resources that allow users to quickly process and store large amounts of web data. Users can view the results of their processes interactively, transfer the results to their home machine, or publish them as a new web service.

The second one is a9., Inc. researches and builds innovative technologies to improve search experience for e-commerce applications. A separately branded and operated subsidiary of, Inc., opened its Palo Alto, California, doors in October 2003.’s technology will power search on and other web sites.
since I am signed onto a9, thyey can trace my micro-moves (what I call as digital footprints on the web).

Since you are signed in to, you get access to several tools that personalize your search experience. Get the A9 Toolbar to take full advantage of these tools (you can easily uninstall it later). These include:

Your History: We allow you to record a trail of all sites you have seen. You can search that trail at any time. A9 Toolbar users can turn this feature on and off with one click.
Your Bookmarks: We provide you with server-side Bookmarks that will always be available (and searchable) from anywhere.
Your Diary: We let you create notes as you browse the web. We store them for you and allow you to search them later.
Discover: We recommend sites that may be interesting to you based on what you have seen in the past and what people like you are seeing now.

If you do not wish to see these tools here, you may hide them by clicking the "Hide Tools" link above. Even if your tools are closed, you can still search Your History, Bookmarks, and Diary by selecting the appropriate search results box.

Amazon is also clarifying the payment model that underlies the robustness of Web 2.0 as a business infrastructure. Amazon Web Information Service tests on-demand payment model by ZDNet's Phil Wainewright -- Amazon's Alexa Web Information Service has come out of beta and revealed its usage-based charging model - a vital step towards proving the financial viability of Web 2.0.


Will Amazon get the premium of a search company in the near future? Will Amazon be able to parlay these developments to become a serious player in the web 2.0 space?

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