Live content is becoming a major component of the Web–particularly sporting events and webcast political events. But figuring out when and where stuff will pop up can be a challenge. The founders of a new company, called LiveMatrix, say their software can automatically keep track of live content and, eventually, to recommend what a person might want to see. They hope it could also offer an appealing new way for advertisers to reach people.
“When matters,” says Nova Spivack, cofounder of LiveMatrix. Spivack previously founded Radar Networks, a company focused on semantic Web technology. Radar Networks created the website Twine, which can be used to explore content through “meaning” or related concepts thanks to a combination of artificial intelligence and categorization by users. Radar Networks was sold to another semantic Web company, Evri, earlier this month.
Spivack says LiveMatrix uses similar semantic Web technologies to interpret and categorize content. His new company employs several people who have experience building TV listings, and it aims to become the destination for people interested in taking part in all kinds of time-sensitive online activities. Though a number of other startup companies, such as Clicker, are focusing on helping users explore distributed online video content, LiveMatrix hopes that its attention to live events will set it apart. Spivack expects LiveMatrix to launch at the end of May.
Live content, is becoming more and more popular online. YouTube recently served 10 million streams of a U2 concert to its users, while UStream served two million live streams of the Twilight red carpet premiere. However, time-sensitive events go far beyond video, Spivack says. He points to auctions, special events in online computer games, interactive chats, classes, and contests.
Sanjay Reddy, CEO and cofounder of LiveMatrix, says the company intends to be neutral and won’t promote any particular content and won’t show events on its own site. Instead it will gather information and direct users to content providers’ sites.