A new startup – SearchTrade, armed with a simple but ground-breaking concept is looking to change the way we use the most widely used resource on the internet – the search engine.
SearchTrade uses a methodology and concept that is strikingly different to conventional, established models of search engines such as Google, Bing & Yahoo. The difference? It aims to reward you for the time spent searching while on search engines, with Bitcoin.
“I began my research with an objective of finding a digital asset that had properties similar to that of a physical asset,” notes Vishal Gupta, CEO and Co-Founder of SearchTrade on his advent into looking at search engines in a new way.
“While doing my research, It dawned upon me that most commonly indulged activity on the internet is searching, since everything we do on the internet starts with an act of search. I then put my mind on designing a system that would turn the act of ‘searching’ into an economic opportunity for all,” Gupta explains.
The startup is currently garnering plenty of interest by selling ‘keywords’ to buyers interested in claiming them as assets. Keywords used during a search creates revenue for the owner of the keyword, besides the Bitcoin payout guaranteed to the user searching for the keywords.
SearchTrade has already raised over 200 Bitcoins, (approx USD $45,000) within a week of the launch of its crowd-sale where 500 keywords were snapped up by investors. The company is planning more crowd-sales for other keywords in the coming days.
At the time of writing this, the startup is currently gearing itself for the launch of its search platform in 85 days.
The Concept – a Fully Realized, Rewarding Search Engine
The search engine industry is a significant one and is unsurprisingly dominated by Google – both in reach and revenue. Internet marketers spend billions of dollars every year on search advertising, and it’s easy to see why. Localized searches performed by millions of internet users looking for a product or a service nearby are online leads that convert to sales. This sure-fire business model coupled with the pay-per-click concept for keywords (AdWords) that place targeted advertisements has businesses opting for search engines as a significant medium for marketing.
Despite the successes of the search engine industry, Gupta sees the potential for building a better search-engine business model where wealth is created and shared between users and the business since it’s users’ participation that creates the wealth in first place.
“I strongly believe that search is the most neglected business on the internet,” contends Gupta. He means to tap into it by rewarding stakeholders for every act of search – including the end-user searching for anything on the search engine, with Bitcoin.
On SearchTrade, users can choose from a variety of search engines listed on their app market to do a search from. They are also actively building their own search-based applications ahead of their launch. The demo site is currently available here.
The Four Stakeholders Gaining from the Search Process
“There is a need to create business models that spread the wealth being generated by internet businesses amongst more people, to both empower them and create opportunities for people to make a livelihood from the internet,” reasons Gupta when explaining the need to split the monetary windfall generated by a search engine.
The four gainers or stakeholders involved in the SearchTrade search process are:
- The Initiator – The person doing the search that triggers and sustains the entire search industry.
- The Miner – The investor who owns the keyword or phrase that is being searched for on the search engine.
- The Developer – The innovator who builds applications that users use on the search platform.
- The Advertiser – The marketer who pays to advertise their products and services among the search results.
SearchTrade monetizes the searches by selling ads to marketers and then shares the revenue with various stakeholders involved.
Keywords – a Key Resource for All
In licensing keywords as assets, SearchTrade has a proven new investment opportunity for those looking to buy-in to the company’s methodology.
Quite simply, keyword owners will earn bitcoins every time an end-user performs a search that contains keyword they own within SearchTrade’s search engine. As an example, if someone owned the word “Hotel” they would get paid in bitcoin every time it became part of a search query, such as “Hotel in London”. Furthermore, these keywords can also be traded with other SearchTrade users, the way commodities are traded. Users are also free to make an offer on keywords owned by others.
Gupta confirms that third party ad services will be integrated into SearchTrade to begin with, in order to generate ad income initially. The company’s own ad program will be added to the search engine over time as traffic on the site increases. This move will contribute to a bigger pool of revenue that is to be shared among its stakeholders.
The SearchTrade Community Pool
Elaborating on earnings of the pool, SearchTrade currently operates on five sources of income. They are:
- Advertising. The revenue brought in from advertisers and internet marketers.
- Keyword First Sale. The sale of keywords to investors, as demonstrated in its initial sale of 500 keywords (and counting).
- Keyword Trading Commission. SearchTrade charges a commission fee whenever keywords are traded among SearchTrade users.
- Keyword Renewal Fee. A fee of $1 is charged every year to every keyword licensed by users.
- Sale of Search Data to 3rd Parties. The revenue brought in from the sale of search data API(s) to 3rd party ad programs.
All of the above sources of income are added to the SearchTrade Community Pool that is proportionally distributed amongst all stakeholders every time a search takes place. The methodology being: total income divided by the total number of searches and arriving at average income per search that becomes the payout per search.
The Potential & Promise for App Developers
Gupta believes there is currently little room for innovation in the search-engine space for independent developers who could otherwise do wonders with specialized search engines that target niche markets or users, but are encumbered due to lack of monetization possibilities.
“The dominance of a few large players because of scale they have achieved is making it unviable for coders to build specialized search engines that cater to niche demands,” Gupta says, looking at the current landscape in search engine industry.
“We hope to provide such innovators with a platform to showcase their searched based application ideas to SearchTrade users and also provide them with a business model wherein they can make money and sustain their businesses,” explains Gupta.
In a call out to developers to innovate with new ideas and applications, SearchTrade is currently sharing 25% of the payout of every search generated, toward the developer. The payout is made every time a search is made by SearchTrade user using the developer’s search application while they are logged in.
The potential is staggering, and the vision inherent has the ideology to shake-up the entire search industry. Vishal Gupta and his company’s goals to contribute to the search engine industry and the wider internet are simple.
“We hope to see a more collaborative internet where there are more opportunities for an average Joe to participate and make a living from the web without having to be a coder or a computer expert,” adds Gupta, at the helm of SearchTrade, a company equipped with a unique, revolutionizing take of the search engine.
This is a Showcase. Featured image from Shutterstock.
Daily Analysis: Oil and Gold Jump on Saudi Turmoil
Monday Market Recap
|Asset||Current Value||Daily Change|
|WTI Crude Oil||57.34||3.06%|
While rumors have been circling about a severe inner struggle in the Saudi Royal family, the weekend’s serious crackdown caught everyone by surprise. As of now, two princes died in one day, while dozens of high-ranking officials were arrested, in what could be described as a reverse coup by crown prince Mohammad bin Salman, not unlike the events in Turkey earlier this year.
The price of crude oil jumped to a more than two-year high following the events, as the offensive strategy of the prince puts the balance of the Middle East into jeopardy, although the fundamentals of the energy market remain highly vulnerable. Gold and natural gas also surged higher today as a consequence of the crisis, while the Japanese Yen gained ground too, thanks to increased safe-haven flows.
WTI Crude Oil, Daily Chart Analysis
Equity markets barely budged on the turmoil, as the most important US indices are still hitting marginal new all-time highs, while European and Asian stocks are slightly lagging behind. The NASDAQ is pulling is weight with the help of Apple and Amazon, although market internals still show a strong divergence between the leaders of the rally and the majority of stocks.
Apple, 4-Hour Chart Analysis
Currency markets had an active session, with the Great British Pounds rebound and the Yen’s strength dominating the day. Commodity currencies, such as the Canadian Dollar and the Aussie, also gained ground thanks to the jump in the energy segment and gold, while the Euro performed at par with the USD, with no major economic releases coming out in the most-watched markets.
The major coins had another hectic session after the busy weekend, with Bitcoin’s decline stealing the show, as the currency slipped below the $7000 level. BTC is still the best performing coin on almost all time-frames, but the overbought technical picture points to elevated risk regarding the short-term outlook.
Altcoins experienced some buying as capital fled Bitcoin, while the total value of the segment gradually declined below the historic $200 billion mark. Ethereum Classic continued to make headlines, but Monero although rallied strongly, while IOTA showed signs of strength in the second half of the session. The rest of the market was little changed, and that could mean that the volatility in BTC won’t “infect” altcoins during the correction.
XMR/USD, 4-Hour Chart Analysis
Key Economic Releases on Monday
|03:00||JAPAN||BOJ Governeor Kuroda Speaks||–||–||–|
Key Economic Releases on Tuesday
|05:30||AUSTRALIA||RBA Rate Decision||1.5%||1.5%|
|11:00||EUROZONE||ECB President Draghi Speaks||–||–|
|21:30||US||Fed Chair Yellen Speaks||–||–|
Featured image from Shutterstock
CUJO Offers Business Level CyberSecurity In The Comfort Of Your Home
Los Angeles isn’t known for its booming tech community. Yet a vibrant tech community, often referred to as ‘Silicon Beach’, has formed outside of the southern California city. One company calling the Redondo Beach home, CUJO, recently made big waves in the world of crowdsourcing.
CUJO has raised more than $128,000 on Indiegogo towards protecting web-connected devices at home. The financial goal for that campaign was $30,000.
The smart, cloud-based IoT offers business level security for home devices. Firewall, antivirus, malware and deep-packet inspection technology combine to ensure your smart TVs, computers, tablets and other devices remain safe from hackers.
“My kids started using tablets before they began talking,” co-founder and CEO Einaras Gravrock told Hacked.
I looked for ways to improve our Internet security, having heard stories that these new smart devices are easy targets for criminals.
What he found was either designed for a PC or too expensive and complicated for home users. Co-founder & Chairman Yuri Frayman approached him with a similar problem.
“He had a solution in mind that was both brilliant from the tech perspective, and simple from the ease-of-use perspective,” Gravrock said.
CUJO protects your computers differently than other cyber security solutions, which generally maintain a library of known issues. CUJO, instead, analyzes attacks as they come in and pushes these upgrades to all the homes it secures.
“CUJO acts as a gateway to your network,” Gravrock told Hacked. “It inspects packets entering and leaving the network, analyzes content locally, and inspects behavior in the cloud. By connecting your CUJO to our cloud we are able to continuously improve it and adapt to new threats.”
CUJO, which uses a 1GHz Cavium Dual COre Processor, utilizes the following measures of security for your home smart devices: Rule Based Protection Machine Learning Protection Deep-Packet Inspection Virus Protection Malware Protection Hack Protection Mobile App For Android & iOS.
On CUJO’s mobile app, you can see an overview of all connected devices and receive alerts when threats are neutralized. CUJO encrypts all data on its network and credit card data is stored outside the main storage system.
People will still need to install Antivirus, because CUJO solves different problems. Antivirus software discovers and removes viruses that had been installed on your computer.
“Think of it was a way to cure the disease,” Gravrock said. “I guess that is why they ‘quarantine’ those viruses. CUJO aims to block from such threats entering your network in the first place.” So, in a way, CUJO is something entirely different.
Think of CUJO as an immunity system for your home network. Sometimes even the strongest immunity systems can fail, so it is important to have multiple layers of security in your home.
CUJO faces a huge challenge, and the startup recognizes that.
“We expected for CUJO to be a hit, given how many concerned people there are,” he told Hacked. “So we brought together a team of professionals who have a track record solving similar problems.” Ultimately, CUJO wants to people to be safe in our digital future, as Gravrock explains:
Our homes are full of devices that are connected to the Internet. They bring a lot of good to our lives but they are also easy targets for cyber criminals. And people know that since the issue has been reported countless times by the media. Today 1% of our ‘things’ are connected to the Internet. Yet we are already seeing a tremendous amount of security and privacy breaches. Imagine the world when 20%, 50%, or 99% of things go online. Our goal is to provide an option for our homes to be a little safer in that world.
CUJO’s monthly subscription runs for $8.99. The annual subscription will save you some money, priced at $89. Indiegogo contributors can save money now on the system.
For only $49 users can receive the beautiful CUJO device and 6 months of free service. There’s no commitment to continue beyond the 6 months. “We are confident that our backers will enjoy the CUJO experience enough to subscribe for the long term. We also offer additional rewards and ways to earn even more free service by inviting friends to get a CUJO.”
Go to the IndieGoGo project here.
This is a Showcase.
Virtual Reality Theme Park Will Offer the Best VR Experience to Everyone – THE VOID Exclusive
The Vision Of Infinite Dimensions (THE VOID), the world’s first Virtual Reality (VR) theme park, will open its doors in Pleasant Grove, Utah, in the summer 2016. THE VOID will combine physical environments with VR technology to offer the ultimate entertainment experience.
“At THE VOID you will walk into new dimensions and experience worlds without limits,” says THE VOID’s website. “From fighting intergalactic wars on alien planets, to casting spells in the darkest of dungeons, The Void presents the Future of Entertainment.”
Only limited by imagination, our advanced Virtual-Reality technologies allow you to see, move, and feel our digital worlds in a completely immersive and realistic way.
The Void will offer its own special line of high performance virtual reality interface gears, dubbed “Rapture” which includes headsets (image below), gloves, and body suits with haptic feedback that will allow visitors to see impressive virtual worlds and play games in full 3D, 360-degree immersion, walk in VR, and touch virtual objects. Like the Disney theme parks, THE VOID will be a social experience to enjoy with friends.
Hacked reached out to Gregg Jensen and Devin McGinn, respectively Chief Software Architect and Director of Creative Media at THE VOID, to find out more.
Jensen is responsible for developing THE VOID as a platform. He designed and built many of the APIs (Application Programming Interfaces), that make global tracking as well as the 4D effects possible. He implemented the current user interface that runs the experiences and tracks the status of the packs, and integrated the system that builds and deploys the experiences to all machines in a single click. Currently, he is leading a team to architect and implement THE VOID’s online reservation system, which will be expanded to included avatar creation and micro transactions.
McGinn kindly answered the questions below.
Being Able to Literally Walk Through These Worlds Changes Everything
THE VOID is fulfilling the true promise of VR as a place people can come and not just play a game or watch a movie, but actually live them.
What’s your business model?
If you think about how a high-end movie theatre operates your getting close. People can watch trailers and book times for their experiences just as one might do when going to see a movie. This is one of the ways we avoid people having to stand in line. In addition, the experience begins the moment you walk through our doors. It will be a fascinating, imaginative and social place where people can spend hours with their friends and family.
Virtual reality has been hyped a lot since the 90s, but it hasn’t been adopted by consumers besides a few hardcore gamers. Can the Rift and other next-generation VR interfaces change that?
We love those systems, but they still have a pretty big price barrier and controller learning curve, not to mention the sickness issues some people have when seated. One of the most important things in getting consumers to adopt VR, is getting a fantastic experience out to the general public.
That’s exactly what our VOID Virtual Entertainment Centers are positioned to do. You don’t have to be a high end gamer with thousands of dollars of hardware to have a fantastic VR experience. It doesn’t matter if you’re a grandparent who has never touched a game controller, or a young child who just wants to be a wizard for a while. At THE VOID we’re making the best VR experience accessible to everyone.
What unique experiences will THE VOID continue to offer to VR-savvy consumers with powerful VR interfaces at home?
Our “Rapture” hardware isn’t confined by the same price point limitations as the home market. This allows us to create the absolute best of the best experiences. Also, walking cannot be overstated. As simple as that sounds, as a gamer we are accustomed to sitting in a chair and holding a controller. In recent years we have even been able to stand in our living room and flail our arms around a bit. But putting on a VR headset, seeing a whole world before you and then simply naturally walking forward to explore it is incredibly powerful.
Though you are exploring a fixed physical space, by using a technique we call “The Infinite Hallway” we can make you feel as though you are walking for miles and never entering the same room twice. Being able to literally walk through these worlds changes everything. You simply cannot get that experience at home.
Are you open to collaborations with entrepreneurs who wish to establish VOID-branded VR theme parks in their area?
We are open to partnering with select groups when it makes sense within our business structure and are currently exploring some of those potential partnerships. However, we don’t see THE VOID falling into a franchise model.
So when will you sell to Disney?
Ha! We see THE VOID as an incredibly strong brand and don’t have plans to part with it anytime soon, though as I stated above we are certainly open to partnerships when the fit is right.
What do you think of the recently announced Jaunt funding round by top investors including Disney, and the possible evolution of Disney theme parks into VR theme parks?
The Jaunt funding is very cool, as it seems like the natural evolution in cinema. It differs from what we are doing, in that I imagine it will still be a seated passive experience. However, as a movie lover I’m excited to see where it goes. As far as Disney possibly moving toward VR I think it makes sense, as we believe this really is the future of entertainment.
The thing about it, is that’s a once a year destination. We imagine THE VOID more like a high-end movie theatre or Imax screen. Most people will eventually have one within driving distance and will visit it multiple times throughout the year. Besides, who’s to say those Disney experiences won’t be powered by THE VOID.
Images from THE VOID.
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