19 January 2010 6 Comments

Semantic Web In Action – Apture

So today I wanted to take a look into a Semantic Web Technology that is invading the blogosphere, Apture.  Apture is a free web service that allows for the integration of multimedia and links within published content, such as to dynamically create a new layer of user experience and interaction.  But what does that really mean? Apture essentially provides another method of communication.

So what can you integrate with Apture?

Well some things are better left done than said (click on the links):

Apture even assists in embedding content directly into the content:

How does Apture work?

Apture does all this by dynamically aggregating information from 50+ sources including:

  • Documents: SlideShare, Google Books, and Scribd
  • Images: Flickr, Yahoo Image Search, Wikimedia Commons, and Bing Image Search
  • Video: YouTube, Reuters, Truveo, Dailymotion, Hulu, Comedy Central, ESPN, and Metavid
  • Maps: Google Maps
  • Audio: National Public Radio
  • References: Wikipedia, Amazon, CrunchBase, U.S. Congress, and IMDB
  • People: Twitter, LinkedIn, and U.S. Congress
  • News: Daylife, Reuters, Guardian, NYTimes, Washington Post, and BBC News

How Can Apture Help My Site?

For the publisher, Apture elimates much of the fieldwork in searching for relevant content and media, and reduces it to a concise search for a relevant term. Furthermore, Apture works not only on WordPress but on other blogging platforms as well, notably: Typeface, Ning, Drupal, Blogger, and Movable Type.

How Do I Use Apture?

The first step is to goto the Apture site and download the plugin (WordPress users can also install the plugin directly from the backend of their blog after a quick search for ‘Apture’).  For your first use, after installing and activating the plugin, you’ll be prompted to create an account with Apture.  After logging in and linking your domain to your site, the dynamic fun begins.  Two new buttons will appear in the “upload/insert” section of the visual editor for your posts:

  • Add Apture Link 
  • Add Apture Embed

Clicking on either of these (While having text selected for ‘Add Apture Link’) brings up the Apture editing  hub allowing you to search for a term and adding your content accordingly :

After selecting the relevant content, click “Create Embed” and bam! your done.  Check out your post on the frontend and enjoy the fact that users aren’t being led away from your site every time you want to provide them with external content

In A NutShell

A free service with the capabilities of a premium plugin, Apture offers rapid integration of content and creates another layer of user experience that can be rivaled.  Coupled with the large array of contents feeding the apture search, you’ll be sure to find that perfect media complement to your own content.

Looking forward to hearing how Apture is enriching the way you post!

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6 Responses to “Semantic Web In Action – Apture”

  1. Melissa 19 January 2010 at 4:30 am #

    Well done! Apture seems like a very usable feature – great research! I like keeping posted on your site!

  2. Dave 11 February 2010 at 5:35 pm #

    Really like your use of apture here, Dave

  3. David Kuhta 11 February 2010 at 9:01 pm #

    Dave, Thanks for the complement! I was pretty excited about the power of Apture to add that “extra” content that I think may be helpful or interesting for readers, but without needing to put it directly in the post. I saw the “Alaskan Properties” Apture embed on your site with the thumbnail pictures underneath, that looked pretty sweet! I’ll have to try something like that out in the future. Thanks again, and look forward to seeing some more “Apturized” content on your site.

  4. Leo 9 March 2010 at 1:31 pm #

    so its the same as http://www.zemanta.com but a bit more complex? I see…

    I wonder if they will convert as many users as zemanta, zemanta has surely a big advance start of ~ 2 years?

  5. David Kuhta 10 March 2010 at 12:38 am #

    You bring up a good point with regards to a Zemanta comparison, but I’ve found Apture to be different on the basis of “who” does the determination of related content. With Apture, the responsibility to determine what content should have related links is placed on the user. Hence for a blog post on the stock market, the user determines that they should “Apturize” text relating to “Wall Street” with say a google map to Wall Street in New York City and embed a photo of the iconic “Bear & Bull statue.” On the other hand, Zemanta uses natural language processing and semantic search to determine what it considers to be the focus and important text in the article and “it” recommends linking that same “Wall Street” text to its equivalent Wikipedia entry.
    With regards to users, I’ve actually heard of Apture and Zemanta being used in conjunction with one another, Apture for content and Zemanta for concept, so to speak. That just may be an idea I have to try out here. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!


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