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[FYI] (Fwd) <nettime> microsoft: privatising the 'everyday language'
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- Date: Wed, 15 Mar 2000 10:40:10 +0100
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From: scotartt <email@example.com>
Subject: <nettime> microsoft: privatising the 'everyday language' of the 'everyday web'
Date sent: Wed, 15 Mar 2000 17:15:27 +1100
Microsoft announces that it partner with RealNames. This travesty of a
'solution' effectively PRIVATISES the categorisation of the internet
names. Effectively, the MS strategy is to 'embrace and extend' the DNS
service by BYPASSING it. Instead of a logically way of organising the
name space such that entities are within categories that suit them, MS
and RealNames (and all like competitors) merely privatise the name
space to the highest bidder.
Internet users should be very concerned at these developments.
Effectively it makes the whole debate about '.com', '.org' and '.net'
redundant by implementing a full and completely FLAT name space, in
which there will ever only be ONE Mcdonalds, ONE Mcphee, ONE nettime
and so on.
ICANN should be doing somehting about this illogical organisation of
the namespace and implementing a technical system which make such
PRIVATISATION of the totality of the namespace impossible.
Microsoft copyright breach follows;
Internet Keywords: Enabling Everyday Words on the Everyday Web
Steve Ballmer(L), president and CEO of Microsoft, shakes hands with
Keith Teare, CEO of RealNames Corporation, at PC Forum 2000, after
announcing Microsoft's commitment to RealNames' Internet Keyword
solution, which allows Web users to navigate using common words.
Photo by Jeff Christensen
REDMOND, Wash., Mar. 14, 2000 -- Microsoft today announced that it
will integrate RealNames' Internet Keyword solution -- a common naming
system that gives users direct and intuitive navigation using simple,
everyday words -- into MSN Search and Internet Explorer. The company
also announced that it is taking an equity stake of approximately 20
percent in RealNames. To find out what this announcement means for the
two companies -- and how the Internet Keyword solution fits into
Microsoft's Everyday Web vision -- PressPass spoke with RealNames CEO
Keith Teare and Brad Chase, senior vice president of Microsoft's
Press Pass: Why is Microsoft making such a strong commitment to the
RealNames Internet Keyword solution?
Chase: RealNames has done a great job of solving one of the biggest
frustrations people have with the Internet today, which is the
complexity of finding the right Web site. Most sites have arcane
domain names and URLs that either have very little to do with their
content or are virtually impossible to remember. For instance, who
would guess that the United Airlines home page is at www.ual.com,
rather than united.com? Or that if you wanted information about Ford
cars and trucks, you'd go to www.fordvehicles.com, instead of just
ford.com? And even if you know the domain name, it's impossible to go
directly to a specific page within a site -- if, for example, you want
to get information about United's frequent flyer program, or a
particular Ford vehicle. It's frustrating to consumers because it's
not intuitive. And it's a problem for companies, because they'd like
to seamlessly extend their trademarks and brand names into the online
world. Microsoft is committed to the concept of the Everyday Web, and
there's nothing more fundamental to that vision than the names we
associate with everyday things. When we saw that the Internet Keyword
system was expressly designed to address this problem, we decided to
integrate it into MSN Search and Internet Explorer so people can use
ordinary language to get the information they want on the Internet.
Press Pass: How will RealNames benefit from working with Microsoft?
Teare: We gain credibility and validation as well as tremendous
distribution. Microsoft recognized that we have built the next
generation of Internet navigation, and they've chosen to offer it to
hundreds of millions of consumers worldwide because it delivers such
great benefits. By being embedded in the Internet Explorer browser and
integrated into MSN Search, our Internet Keyword system can be used by
more people in a seamless and natural way.
Press Pass: Why are Internet Keywords important to consumers?
Teare: They're important because people think and communicate in
ordinary language, not technical code words. We hear about companies
and products and issues through television, radio, magazines and
newspapers. And the things we hear about have recognizable names, like
the "Frasier" television show. But when we go to the Internet to get
more information about "Frasier," we're forced to use unrecognizable
names that start with "http" or "www." Our Internet Keyword system
uses a common naming system to bring together the world of television,
radio and print media and the world of the Internet. It includes the
brands and trademarks consumers are familiar with, so there's nothing
extra to remember. You just type in "Frasier" or "United" or "Ford,"
and the browser goes right to it. Internet Keywords let people use the
knowledge they already have to make their Internet navigation more
efficient and rewarding.
Press Pass: How will the RealNames solution benefit consumers?
Teare: The solution saves time and reduces frustration because there's
nothing new to learn and nothing hard to remember. Consumers just use
what they already know. It makes the Internet more accessible to more
people because it removes those assumptions of technical know-how that
create barriers for ordinary people.
Chase: That's right. People can just type words in the Internet
Explorer Address Bar or in MSN Search and find what they're looking
for. If the match is definitive -- such as BMW or Ford -- the user
will be taken directly to the corresponding Web page. If it's not --
such as Delta, which could be the airline or the faucet company -- the
most relevant matches will be displayed and the user simply clicks on
the right one. Plus, Internet Keywords let you navigate directly to a
page deep within a Web site without requiring you to click through
multiple links or remember long name extensions. So in Keith's
"Frasier" example, you wouldn't have to start with the corporate
entity, go to NBC's Web site, click on the "prime time" link, and so
on. You'd go right to "Frasier." Internet Keywords makes navigation
much faster and more intuitive for consumers.
Press Pass: What do Internet Keywords mean for the search engine
Teare: I think it will push the industry toward more sophistication
and more specialization, with search engines geared to the unique
needs of various types of users. People will increasingly turn to
search engines for the research functions they were designed for,
rather than for straightforward navigation, which is what our service
does. People may end up using search engines less often, but they'll
get better results.
Chase: When you integrate the two worlds, as we do with Internet
Explorer and MSN Search, you can create the optimal user experience.
Users can get an exact, definitive search result or a list of options
to choose from, depending on what they want and which tool they use.
Press Pass: Are Internet Keywords an open solution?
Chase: Yes, absolutely. Internet Keywords are based on open Internet
standards and are supported across the entire Internet, so it's not a
closed or proprietary solution. All search engines can provide the
benefit of Internet Keywords to their own users.
Press Pass: How does this solution affect international consumers?
Teare: The solution has benefits for all consumers, but the benefits
are especially huge for non-English-speaking users. Today's Internet
URLs are limited to the 66 Roman characters -- what technical people
call ASCII. Our Internet Keyword system can use any character in any
written language, just like Windows 2000. So people can type their
search word in Hebrew or Mandarin or Cyrillic or Kanji or whatever,
and Internet Explorer will take them right to the Web page in their
own language. (Or, they can go to the page in another language if they
change the MSN defaults.) With Internet Keywords, people all over the
world can navigate the entire Internet using their own languages to go
directly to the site they want.
Chase: It will be much faster and easier for people to find the
information they want on the Web, in a truly global way. Their
familiar local brands and companies will be embedded into their
browsers and MSN Search, and it will be fully intuitive no matter what
language they speak.
More Information Resources
Steve Ballmer Announces Microsoft's Integration of RealNames' Internet
Keyword Navigation Solution - Mar. 14, 2000
Other Microsoft Resources:
MSN Search Web Site
Microsoft Internet Explorer Web Site
RealNames Web Site
©2000 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.
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