New engine dredges the Web for vendor news

New engine dredges the Web for vendor news

By John Breeden II

GCN Staff

Web search engines dredge up such heavy loads of junk that they have limited value in serious research by government buyers.

A new, free search engine called 1Jump takes a different approach. It searches exclusively for information and news about companies, with an emphasis on computer and technical companies, though some retail vendors are included.

The interface is a little hard to comprehend because it has so many buttons to push. If you aren't careful, you end up searching for news in the wrong locations. The options menu tells the engine where to search.

My review copy apparently had its default setting tuned to Canadian companies, and I could not find anything about Microsoft Corp. on my first couple of tries. Once I reset the options menu to look for U.S. companies, it worked fine and pulled up an impressive volume and range of information.

The primary function is to find news items, but there are lots of extra features. For example, click on the Company Officers button to see a list of upper managers, their ages, titles and published e-mail addresses.

Clicking on the Patent button brings up a list of every patent a company owns. Microsoft's is 31 pages long. Besides being interesting reading, the list gives you an idea of what a company is planning or is capable of doing.

Box Score ''''''

Web search engine for vendor news

1Jump LLC; Woodstock, Vt.
tel. 802-457-3803


+ Extensive company databases

+ Contacts, links and news displayed

+ Updated through Web

- Slight learning curve

Real-life requirements:

Windows 9x or NT, Internet connection

Clicking on the Peers button produces a list of companies associated in some way with the company you are researching. You can jump to their Web pages or have 1Jump cull information about them.

A See Also button goes to other Web pages relevant to the company. For example, the Chinese Software Industry Association came up as a See Also page when I was reading news items about Microsoft's battle against software piracy in China.

Say you want to buy specific information technology services locally and need to know how many companies should get requests for information. Just search for all companies within a certain area code or ZIP code. When I told 1Jump to search for companies with a 301 Maryland area code, I was given 59 pages of data. A search for all businesses listed in Chicago brought up 95 pages.

For obscure companies the information is rather basic. You might not get a list of the officers, but you can click the Contact button to see how to reach the company and where it is located. You can also go to its Web site.

Any government buyer who needs specific vendor information will find 1Jump invaluable.

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