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 Post subject: IT News:News blackout keeps 'Google killer' out of spotlight
PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2006 1:44 pm 
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Reporters looking for information about Europe's first search engine named “Quaero” drew a blank because of a 'news blackout' imposed by Thomson – the French electronics company signed up for Quaero. The company asked its media staff to keep mum and had its website removed.

Journalists are surprised because last week French President had said that Europe would counter the current search giants like Google and Yahoo with a search engine of its own. It would be the world's first “truly multimedia” search engine providing the service for audio-visual content. The Franco-German offering would be called “Quaero” - Latin for “I seek”.

In a speech last week, Chirac had said that Europe should respond to “the challenge posed by the American giants Google and Yahoo”. (Was the omission of 'MSN' deliberate, we wonder?) Some statesmen even said a coming out party can be expected next month when the service's objectives and features would be announced. However, a spokesperson of the Franco-German Economic Cooperation Working Group said there are no plans for any such event.



Quaero, it is believed, will provide search services for sound, image and video content besides an audio-visual archive for historical footage. Experts insist Quaero will not be a single product. Instead, it will be a multi-faceted project combining search and content management technologies aiming to capture a slice of the huge and growing volume of digital multimedia Web content. Quaero features may possibly include technologies for annotating and even translating content into other languages.

The working group spokesperson offered some tentative descriptions stating them as possible advantages with Quaero: technologies that can automatically transcribe, index and translate audio-visual content. It may include content protection technologies like watermarking and digital signatures and could also allow long-term storage of vast amounts of data.

Although the project will be largely shouldered by both France and Germany, the latter has not committed to anything so far. It will be a consortium of companies from both countries, including technology companies, universities and national TV archives. As of now, the project is being led by France's Agency for Industrial Innovation which was created by Jean-Louis Beffa, chairman of leading glass maker Saint Gobain. AII has signed on Thomson, the media services and equipment group.

A Thomson spokesman confirmed that the company had removed its website as part of a “new blackout”. Its chairman Frank Dageard felt “we should stop making any comments until a more official press event”, he said.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 17, 2006 10:45 pm 
Cool, that will be awesome, I alwas wanted a totaly media search engine (Including Audio & Videos... maybe even flash :))


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2006 5:32 am 
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Yeah, but still I don't think anyone can beat google... but who knows :)

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2006 6:28 pm 
Agree on that one :) It would be nice to have an alternative though :)


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 18, 2006 7:08 pm 
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Googles even the dictionary ..Or going to be ?

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