iFOCOS Search Working Group Launches

The discussion at We Media Miami on next-generation search concepts, chaired by Jim Kennedy of The Associated Press, was both vibrant and inconclusive. So we’re going further. We’ve launched the iFOCOS Search Working Group. The group will hold its kickoff meeting April 24, 2007, in Santa Clara, California – using meeting space generously provided by Yahoo!

Members include:
Neil Budde, GM, Yahoo! News; Suranga Chandratillake, founder/CTO, Blinkx; Jeff Clavier, Managing Partner, SoftechVC; Steven Donahue, Professor, Miami Dade College; Jeffrey S. Given, science.gov/Computer Operations Manager, Office of Scientific and Technical Information, U.S. Dept. of Energy; Jim Kennedy, VP Strategy, Associated Press; Michael Mannes, VP Strategy, Gannett; Oren Michels, CEO, Mashery; Andrew Nachison, President, iFOCOS; Julie Rutherford, Marketing Director, WashingtonPost.Newsweek Interactive; Rich Skrenta, CEO, Topix.

This is the first of what we hope will become many action-oriented teams initiated and driven by members. Working Groups are an antidote to the tedium of best practices meetings – our working groups will focus on better practices and results. If you and your company haven’t become members of iFOCOS yet – please do. Our impact and ability to convene projects like the search working group depends on the support and participation of members. Please review the membership details and benefits, join now, and then help us push the agenda and outcomes further.

To join now, click here.

About Search
Could internet search work better? What would a next-generation, “better” search experience look like, especially for discovering news and current events information? What is “better” – and what would it take to get there?

This working group of experts representing key constituents from search and content companies will share ideas and assess opportunities, if any, to collaborate on initiatives, standards or recommendations that could enable independent innovation and improved means to access more relevant and more informative search results across digital platforms.

The goal of this working group is to seek a next-generation vision for making sense of the world’s information. The result could be no more than a set of recommendations, or creative ideas applied in unexpected ways; or perhaps action among members to develop a new data standard or some other collaborative project.

We want to keep our working groups as small as possible – 10 – 20 people – but have enough brainpower, key constituents and influence represented to consider actions if any emerge.

Our goal is to convene and facilitate the smallest group possible to be effective and well-rounded, with a potential to collaborate and have influence on next steps (which might include other participants). We’ll post notes, position statements and conclusions on the iFOCOS blog to seek additional input, expand the conversation and discover other collaborators.

Working groups are driven by the members. iFOCOS will facilitate a working group’s creation, initial information sharing and kickoff meeting to push the discussion further, and ask participants to self-organize on subsequent actions and recommendations. Follow-up actions might require some financial commitment to cover support or development costs, if any emerge. That will be discussed at the kickoff meeting or in follow-up conversations.

This is meant to be collaborative and driven by the working group members – not merely advisory to or driven by iFOCOS. You can help shape and move the agenda forward, debate and push back on assumptions or recommend alternative approaches. As a learning experience the dialog might inspire new R&D and innovation within individual member companies irrespective of shared actions or outcomes.

Members: If you’d like to join the search working group – or start a new working group on a different subject – contact Andrew Nachison at iFOCOS.

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