October 2, 2006 One of the frustrations associated with audio and video compared to text is that you have to listen to or watch the entire thing. At least that was until Seattle start-up Pluggd debuted a significant new technology for the booming internet audio industry at the semi-annual DEMO conference this week. HearHere, search technology identifies topics within audio and allows users to search within audio Internet programming and quickly find the segments they want. The HearHere feature lets the user type in a keyword representing a topic he or she is looking for and displays a 'heat map' within the media player that visually indicates where in the content the topic is discussed. HearHere's patent-pending technology allows people to find where a conversation of interest starts instead of simply dropping them in the middle of the audiocast, and will identify related topics even if the keyword isn't explicitly used in the content. HearHere will be available along with support for video by the end of the year. With radio and television increasingly turning to the Internet for distribution, the technology also makes it uniquely possible to connect advertisers with new audiences.
"The number of people who enjoy Internet radio and television shows, which are often referred to as 'podcasts' or videocasts, is growing exponentially," said Pluggd CEO and co-Founder Alex Castro. "
"HearHere uses proprietary voice recognition software and search algorithms to create a superior solution for consumers. Our visual and intuitive interface takes you exactly where you want to go within a 'podcast'."
"Pluggd is creating exciting new search technologies and will dramatically affect the way we consume audio content," said DEMO Executive Producer Chris Shipley. "The DEMO team was very impressed with what Pluggd is doing to make the 'podcast' listening experience a better one for users. Its technology has the potential to alter the industry, as well as connect radio and eventually television advertisers to new listeners."
"What Google does for text-based web page searches, HearHere and Pluggd will do for audio and video searches," said Castro.
Pluggd was founded in February 2006 with the goal of making it easier for people to discover, listen to and share Internet radio and television programming. The company's patent-pending technologies and HearHere search feature make it easy for consumers to find precisely what they want within a 'podcast'.
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