Yahoo/Twitter combo rolls out a news search engine

Posted by Samantha Rose Hunt

Sunnyvale (CA) - Individuals that are tech savvy have learned that you seem to be able to receive breaking news updates via Twitter faster than you can your local and national news sources. This is due to fast, quick messages which can be delivered by individuals witnessing the events first hand - much like in the case of the airplane landing in the Hudson River, the Mumbai attacks, and the California wildfires.





Twitter is a great place to search for breaking news, unfortunately Twitter posts can often times be wrong, or posted by individuals who are misinformed. Even though Twitter is a great source for finding information, it's not a place where you can expect to find the entire story.



When individuals want the whole story, and get the true scoop they seek out news venues such as Google News and the major news websites. Unfortunately Google News relies on complicated algorithms which are designed to rank stories, and this could take breaking news a little time to reach the top. [As a reference, most "hot news stories" take 25 minutes or longer to reach Google's news pages. -Ed]



Lucky for those seeking to find a great solution to the news delivery, Yahoo BOSS engineer Vik Singh has developed TweetNews. TweetNews combines the results from Yahoo news and compares it with the topics which are hitting Twitter. The service then organizes the Yahoo News based upon what has popularity among individuals using Twitter. This will deliver a search engine that tracks breaking news using Twitter search results. Which will give individuals using Twitter exposure to more detailed information regarding breaking news Tweets.



Basically TweetNews will be capable of delivering high ranking stories on Twitter which could potentially not have enough inbound links for a system designed around an algorithm to properly prioritize them. It also operates by individual's direct input, similar to Digg, BuzzUp or other services which rely on community feedback - and not algorithms.



During the Mumbai attacks, individuals were stressed when trying to get more details and it was difficult to find news articles as the news was breaking. This is actually where the inspiration for TweetNews came from. So now, when you search for Tweets on a specific topic, you are also delivered additional links to news articles.



This is just a starting point for how news could eventually begin to be delivered.