Twitter Acquires Social Search Algorithm Company Julpan

By Erin Harrison September 21, 2011

In its ongoing quest to better understand users’ habits, Twitter has reportedly acquired Julpan, an early alpha-stage technology that analyzes social networking habits across the Web.

Ori Allon, the former founder and CEO of Julpan – who has now assumed the position of director of engineering at Twitter --said in a blog post this week that the New York City-based company looked forward to joining forces with the microblogging site that now boasts 100 million active users.

“We founded Julpan more than a year ago. In that time we’ve created innovative, early-alpha-stage search technology that analyzes social activity across the Web to deliver fresh and relevant content to users,” wrote Allon.

Previously, Google acquired Allon’s patented thesis work called “Orion.” During his time with Google, Allon led a search quality team that integrated the Orion technology and algorithms with the Google search engine.

According to TechCrunch, Google acquired the exclusive rights to the Orion search algorithm in 2006, outbidding both Yahoo and Microsoft on the deal.

At the time, Orion was “the PhD work of a 26-year-old University of New South Wales student named Ori Allon. Allon went on to work for Google, integrating his system into their main search algorithm, where it still plays a key role,” TechCrunch reported.

But now Julpan is all Twitter’s to leverage, with more than 230 million Tweets per day on every subject imaginable.

“Twitter gives us a chance to make an even greater contribution toward instantly bringing people closer to what is most meaningful to them. We look forward to joining forces with Twitter’s engineering team to explore how we can best integrate and optimize Julpan’s innovations,” Allon continued in the post. “I couldn’t have asked for a better group of people with whom to invent some of the world’s best social search technology.”

In related news, TechZone360 recently reported that Twitter’s Director of Web Business Development April Underwood had revealed the launch of Twitter Web Analytics, leveraging its July acquisition of marketing intelligence firm Backtype.

In an official Twitter Developers blog post Sept. 13, Christopher Golda explained that users haven’t been able to “accurately” measure traffic because Twitter’s tools didn’t evolve as quickly as online sharing has.

“…People have struggled to accurately measure the amount of traffic Twitter is sending to their websites, in part because Web analytics software hasn’t evolved as quickly as online sharing and social signals,” wrote Golda.


Erin Harrison is Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives, for TMC, where she oversees the company's strategic editorial initiatives, including the launch of several new print and online initiatives. She plays an active role in the print publications and TechZone360, covering IP communications, information technology and other related topics. To read more of Erin's articles, please visit her columnist page.

Edited by Rich Steeves

Executive Editor, Strategic Initiatives

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