Dare says I just rediscovered Hailstorm

Dare Obasanjo, who works on the backend team at MSN, says I just rediscovered Hailstorm (which was Microsoft’s doomed effort to host your data on its servers). Hmmm, I didn’t remember Hailstorm being aimed at end users. I also didn’t remember that Microsoft tried to take people slowly into that world. They wanted them to jump in feet first. They also didn’t have the trust of customers the way Google has the trust of people on the street.

The other thing that’s hurting Microsoft? We don’t have a monetization gadget. Do we pay bloggers yet to include components? Not yet. Google does. That gets bloggers and Silicon Valley businesspeople to feel good about including their components on Web pages (and bootstraps them into this new world in a way that keeps people from screaming). Oh, and they didn’t name it “Hailstorm.”


Getting Gillmor’s attention

I like how Steve calls me the “attention bunny” in response to my post last night. Here’s just a small tease of his lengthy reply: “Could it be that Microsoft is paying attention? On Tuesday, Bill Gates and Ray Ozzie will likely shake up the industry with details of their rapid move toward the attention economy.”

I still don’t think I totally understand Steve’s vision, but that’s OK. It took me two years to understand Dave Winer’s vision of RSS. I have a 486 brain in a 64-bit world. Here’s a little more — I totally get his point that link-based relevancy is now commoditized at best and is going down in value because of splogs:

“As splogs destroy the perception of page rank legitimacy, which is based not on the actual metrics of linking but the accrued reputational value of a site’s authority, the number of false positives will undermine confidence and dilute the economics of the system. It’s not so much that links are dead, Doc, as that trust in link rank is undermined. As in the bond market, weakened trust lowers ratings and shifts the market in other directions. This is Microsoft’s opportunity.”

Do you grok this? I do. It’s a key part of what I’ve been talking and thinking about, particularly when it comes to search (although Steve has gotten me to see bigger than that). Attention data is gonna be what brings us a new kind of Web — one that doesn’t look like what we know of the Web today.