Alexa Decides It Wants To Be The Platform
from the about-frickin'-time dept
It's still quite amazing that the various search engines haven't been more aggressive in opening up their APIs to encourage people to build on their platform. Hooking developers into your platform is a great way to grow -- yet so many companies fear losing control. Google and Yahoo do have some APIs, but there have often been complaints about just how stingy they are. It looks like Amazon-owned Alexa is trying to shake things up a bit by really opening up their search platform and making it wide open. The Wall Street Journal gives the basic backstory, while John Battelle wonders about the domino effects of this move. While Alexa's search isn't nearly as comprehensive as others, the additional metadata it includes about various sites could be useful for certain types of applications. It seems unlikely that this will be nearly as revolutionary as some are making it out to be, but hopefully it will nudge some of the search players into realizing that they can be much more powerful by turning themselves into platforms rather than destinations.