Creating a Solid Foundation
for Web 2.0"> A rebuilt Weblogs.com and a host of other infrastructure improvements now being worked on by the companies in this space are essential to PubSubs entry into the next step in the blogospheres evolution, wherein PubSubs recently announced Structured Blogging format will make it easier to publish and find information on the Web. Structured Blogging lets users add different styles and tags to each type of blog entry that they post. These styles and tags ensure that movie and book reviews dont look like plain text but instead show up as calendar or journal entries, and that each content type can rely on XML to be quickly recognized and processed by automated search services and other applications."I think theyve clearly looked at blogs and RSS and said, Its valuable and important technology, but out of the box, it isnt terribly scalable," Strohlein said. "They sense theres a business opportunity in making it more secure, more robust and more industrial-strength, so it can be used in broader ways than it has." VeriSigns strategy makes sense because it owns all the PKI and domain addressing technology already, Strohlein said. "Theyre right in the thick of that." The fact that Weblogs.com has been creaking under the load wasnt news to Winer. In December 2004 he posted a plea for help in rewriting the code for Weblogs.com. "With Typepad, MSN Spaces and Blogger and a gazillion other blogs pinging weblogs.com, the server, which is written in scripts, has met its match," Winer said. "Its needed a rewrite in C for some time, now it really needs a rewrite." VeriSign knows its stuff, but how exactly will it stem the rising tide of splog? Graves told eWEEK.com that the company plans a three-pronged approach: through contextual analysis, authentication and heuristics that can trace splog to the tools commonly used to spawn it. He pointed to Google Inc.s Blogger.com as being a good example of search and textual analysis tools that quickly filter splog. "If you go to Blogger.coms front page and view a random blog, if you click through that random blog, you generally get very good quality blogs," he said. "Theyre all readable, done by humans, made for human consumption. "On the back side, we see pings from Blogger.com, and an enormous number are splogger pings," Graves said. "Google obviously has a filtering mechanism in its own perimeter. They use search and textual analysis tools, quickly and fairly accurately, Id say. Youd likely find two or three out of 50 that are spam blogs." VeriSign is working on similar analysis tools. One tactic is to look at the content of a post: Whats the subject matter? Does it seem to have been lifted as a block of text from a post? Is it attempting to get readers to click on a form of solicitation? Most blogs do have linkshow do splog links differ? Next Page: VeriSigns anti-spam plans.
At any rate, the consensus is that VeriSign is the perfect pick for the job of rebuilding the foundations on which such a new blogosphere will grow. "VeriSign, at heart, is sort of a Web infrastructure company," said Marc Strohlein, vice president and lead analyst for Outsell Inc.