Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Are You Being Served?

Finally, Microsoft gets one right:
Microsoft has filed another patent, this one for an "advertising framework" that uses "context data" from your hard drive to show you advertisements and "apportion and credit advertising revenue" to ad suppliers in real time.

This is what we need, people. Better ads.

Thankfully, Microsoft isn't bound by some silly (and irrelevant, sorry) corporate directive to "do no evil". It's about time Microsoft took off the gloves and started competing directly with the hypocrites at Google. This is a good thing. Now, when Microsoft indexes your hard drive (under the auspices of easy "desktop search"), they can direct targeted ads based on your personal information.

Who wouldn't want this?

I can understand why people would be uneasy if this were being offered by Apple or Google. But this is Microsoft we're talking about, folks. As they say in their own patent application:
"The ability to derive and process context data from local sources rather than monitor interactions with a remote entity, such as a server, benefits both consumers and advertisers by delivering more tightly targeted advertisements. The benefit to the user is the perception that the ads are more relevant, and therefore, less of an interruption. The benefit to the advertiser is better focus and a higher chance of conversion to a sale."


1 comment:

Nick said...

Of course, this is only a patent, but I wonder what the real Paul Thurrott (RPT) actually thinks about it. Perhaps he doesn't approve.

That Paul's truly independent just won't wash. One recalls the column where he said that Microsoft had "shown compassion" towards Apple. In fact, they'd just tried to stiff them, and though at the time to which he'd referred they were currently using Apple as a temporary ally, that was (a) because they knew there was money to be made from Office for Mac and (b) because they wanted Apple to help them stiff Netscape (and Sun - c.f. Java) by agreeing to take IE in exchange for getting Office. Compassion my ass.

But he's not always a complete jerk. I notice he's actually mentioned Robbie Bach's shares shenanigans on his blog.

At least RPT has the comfort that one of his biggest critics, Daniel Eran Dilger seems to have definitively proved himself unreliable. On Sunday he referenced an April Fool's joke as proof that iPods run OS X. His readers having pointed out to him that it was a joke, he claimed to have known it was a joke all along, adjusted the original piece slightly, and ran another cover-up piece insulting his readers by saying the original piece was too subtle, writing the new one wholly in simple declarative sentences. Today he's gone completely off the rails, filling most of his column will ill-judged political ranting and bad schoolboy history and finishing up by stating that writing proof-of-concept malware for the Mac is equivalent to committing acts of terrorism.