Amen!! I'm so sick of RealNames. It is almost as silly as AllAdvantage. I asked 20 people at my company if they had ever used a "keyword" and not one had (ok, it *is* possible they did so without knowing about it, which does indicate *some* value in the service). But Teare's current behavior is completely insane. Microsoft should not base it's desicion "solely on business concerns"? Hey, Teare, maybe Microsoft came to its senses and realized it's just plain dumb!
I'm so glad the bubble burst. It's fun to ridicule stupid people - when they were all getting rich *because* of their stupidy, that was just depressing.
I wonder if Teare is in violation of confidentiality agreements. It appears that, AFTER he was no longer an employee of RealNames, he released at least one document that was covered by an NDA (the Go! technical notes). Of course, if RealNames is defunct, no one may care...
Martin L. Shoemaker
I love Teare's comment in his meeting minutes from his conversation with Microsoft. Microsoft clearly no longer wants anything to do with RealNames, but Teare casually assumes that Microsoft will let him keep their $5,000,000 investment so he can "go on and try another business".
And one more thing: IE isn't the only place RealNames could have gone to monetzie its keyword database. Overture is making a decent business doing almost the same thing. AOL might have been interested in combining its keyword database and baking it into Netscape or the IE bundled with each of the 35 million AOL clients. The search URL in IE is customizable by whoever puts the browser on the user's machine as well as after-the-fact. Much of this could have been carried out with a skeleton staff. There does remain an issue, however, where's the value?
I believe RealNames was used to resolve "Internationalised Domain Names" -- unicode-character-set domains used in (mainly) Asian countries. People from Asia might regard that as valuable!
I lived in Japan for a few years and I never saw a domain name in a Japanese character set, they always used regular ASCII characters in domains.
matthew - the ability to use non us-ascii standard characters in domain names is quite new. maybe less than a year old, certainly less than two.
I'm living in Japan now and I was here last year when they started registering non ASCII domains. Everybody rushed to get one. The problem with them is, very few people can use them.
commentary at http://www.ntk.net :
The only thing bad I see about Microsoft in this story is that they were dumb enough to invest in Realnames in the first place.
Personally I could not care less, but it seems that the Asians are not happy at all that realnames goes under. Here's another article from The Register:
Didn't Google use RealNames for a while a couple of years ago?
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