kim19We didn’t quite catch everyone with the round-up of real-time search offerings we posted a few days ago. New entrants seem to be launching every week. Real-time search allows users to find out what’s happening now on any topic, unlike traditional search engines, which bring up the most authoritative results over time as judged by page links. It’s an area of admitted weakness for Google, the industry’s dominant player, and a number of companies have launched services in the last month to lay claim to the space.

Here are several companies we missed last time:

Addict-o-matic: Real-Time Search Like an RSS Reader.
Addict-o-matic creates a custom search page with results pulled from Twitter, Bing, Google Blog Search, YouTube, FriendFeed, Digg and other sources on any topic. Users can rearrange the hierarchy of sources on the results page.

Sources: YouTube, Twitter, Bing, Google, Digg, TweetMeme, WordPress, Delicious, Blinkx, Wikio, Technorati, Twingly, Bloglines

Results: Addict-o-matic picks up Michael Jackson’s death across all of its various sources. I get a wide variety of content in separate mini-windows organized by source. It seems like a service better tailored to users who want to actively track a topic on a daily or hourly basis rather than ones who have a random, spur of the moment query.

Funding: Self funded.


MicroPlaza: Tracking News and Memes on Twitter
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MicroPlaza filters links shared through Twitter and organizes them into a neat, newsy interface. The service can sort headlines chronologically or by popularity. Users can also group the Twitter accounts they follow into “tribes” that track or tweet heavily about specific subjects.

Sources: Twitter

Results: I don’t even need to launch a search because Michael Jackson’s death is so heavily tweeted that it ends up on the home page in large text. So MicroPlaza is probably good for checking on what’s timely now. In the search results, I get five link results with the Twitter conversations about them featured under the headlines, which is similar to what OneRiot produces. I can also check what’s most tweeted and what’s become recently popular.

Funding: I’ll update when I hear back from the company.


Surchur: An older (and slower) real-time search player.

Sources: Surchur incorporates one of the broadest selections of sources of any of the real-time search services out there, using Twitter, Digg, Flickr, YouTube, Delicious, IceRocket, and Technorati. The front page compiles hot topics from CNN, Yahoo Buzz and Google Trends.

Results: Unfortunately, the results don’t pick up Michael Jackson’s death even well over an hour after it was confirmed by The New York Times. The blog results reference a story on how Jackson will use 300,000 Swarovski crystals for his planned tour, and the news results are about his upcoming concert series. The most recent tweet provided by Surchur is one from 20 hours ago.

Funding: Self-funded


Twitscoop: Visualizing Real-Time Search.

You’ll have to log-in to Twitscoop via your Twitter account to see how they sort real-time trends. The service creates tag clouds and graphs to show breaking trends on Twitter. You can also search company names and hover over them to see their stock prices, or search photographs that are tweeted via Twitpic. See our earlier coverage here.

Sources: Twitter

Results: The main page consists of tweets from the people I follow, so there’s nothing too different from logging into Twitter. The “Hot Trends” page is where to go, however, with charts showing off-the-wall interest in Michael Jackson’s death. It picks up the pop singer’s passing immediately. The service makes it also really easy to amplify rumors, since an hour later, the Twitterverse is buzzing about Jeff Goldblum’s rumored death.

Funding: Self funded.


IceRocket: Blog Search Engine Morphing into a Real-Time Search Engine.

IceRocket, which is backed by billionaire Mark Cuban, is an older blog search engine that recently incorporated Twitter results.

Sources: MySpace, Twitter

Results: The Twitter results are pretty similar to what you’d get on the in-house search, as IceRocket sorts by timestamp only. Of course, you can do separate searches on blogs and the web and under the “Big Buzz” tab on the homepage, and it’ll give you a compilation of video, image, blog and Twitter results like Addict-o-matic.

Funding: Angel funded by Mark Cuban. No other rounds to date.


XLHit: Translate Real-Time Search Results from More than 40 Languages.

XLHit, developed by Charles Ying, is a unique real-time competitor because it translates search results in languages from Albanian to Vietnamese. This is useful for tracking news events abroad as I’ve done below with FriendFeed results in Farsi about the continuing political struggle in Iran. XLHit also includes the original Tweet or post’s text in case there are any machine translation errors.

Results: I get more interesting results through FriendFeed search than through Twitter. (A lot of Western tweeters are appropriating phrases in Farsi so there is a bit of noise and few actual Iranian Twitter accounts being represented.) Right now XLHit returns results ordered purely by timestamp, so it could become more useful if popularity were incorporated. (Imagine being able to surf and understand the most viral content in Mandarin or Arabic!)

Sources: Twitter, FriendFeed

Funding: I’ll update when I hear back from the company.

[Top image credit: UC Magazine]