American Express Embraces Citizen Media

Rubel reports that American Expres has launched a new promotion called 15 Second Clips that invites people to submit short ads about their lives (similar to the “My Life, My Card” ad you see on TV).

French President Hypes Up Quaero

The EE Times reports that President Jacques Chirac of France has announced a $2.5 billion injection into the newly launched French Agency for Industrial Innovation (AII). Part of that money will fund Quareo, the oh so super secret search engine that the French and Germans hope will do battle with Google.

As Basil Fawlty would say, “just don’t mention the war”. ;-)

Channel Sponsors

Kontera Receives Funding from Sequoia Capital for ContentLink

Just the other day, I took a look at Kontera’s ContentLink ad solution, and then today I see they’ve received funding from the mighty Sequoia Capital – if any one from Sequoia is reading this, I know of some other great technology that you might want to invest in. :-)

…ContentLink, is based on contextual analysis software that looks to find relevant links in text using software that gets a sense of the meaning of words based on surrounding terms found on a Web page….ContentLink promises to find relevant keywords instantly on a publisher’s Web page and match them to ads presented as sponsored keyword links in the body of Web page text.

Mark Cuban to Host Radio Show on Sirius

Billionaire tech entrepreneur and owner of the Dallas Mavericks, Mark Cuban, is getting his own radio show, according to the WSJ (sub).

The New York subscription-based satellite radio company said Mark Cuban’s Radio Maverick will air Sundays from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Sirius channel 102. Sirius said Mr. Cuban, a billionaire technology entrepreneur who bought the Dallas Mavericks basketball team in 2000, will take calls from listeners and talk with guests while discussing sports, business and everyday life.

Sphere Offers New Blog Search Engine

I’ve not yet taken a look at Sphere, a new blog search engine, but Matt Marshall has and he explains some of the cool tools it offers.

Sphere orders the blog posts by relevance. First, it looks at link structures. For example, Om Malik is an authoritative blogger on telecom matters, enjoying numerous links from other well-known bloggers on the topic. If Om points to a blogger also writing about telecom, Sphere awards that blogger a boost in his relevance ranking, and his posts are considered are ranked higher. But if Om Malik goes off on a tangent, and posts something about the Yankees, he is no longer an expert. Sphere treats any links by Om to bloggers writing on the Yankees as less important. Sphere does this by doing a semantic analysis of the blog posts.

Don’t Panic, this is Just a Google Test

Most of us need to admit that when we see a new interface tweak at Google, we believe we’ve stumbled upon a new roll-out that no one else has discovered yet.

At the Official Google Blog, they explain how Google is always running new interface tests with small samples of users and that these tests do not mean the features will be rolled out.

New York City the Place for Slackers?

A NYC judge has just ruled that a city employee cannot be fired for surfing the web from a work computer.

In his decision, Judge John Spooner said that agencies should apply the same standard to personal Internet use as they do to other personal activities. He noted that many agencies allow employees to take personal calls, or even read the newspaper, as long as those activities do not interfere with a worker’s overall performance.