Radar Networks

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Radar Networks
Industry Data management
Founded 2003
Founder Nova Spivack, Kristinn R. Thórisson
Headquarters San Francisco, California, USA
Key people
Nova Spivack, CEO; Sonja Erickson, VP, Systems Engineering; Christopher Jones, VP of Product Development; Jim Wissner, Chief Architect
Number of employees
Website www.radarnetworks.com

Radar Networks is a San Francisco–based company developing semantic web applications for the general public.[1] The company was founded in 2003 by Nova Spivack and Kristinn R. Thórisson. On March 11, 2010, Radar Networks was acquired by Evri Inc. along with Twine.com[2]


The company was founded in 2003 by web entrepreneur Nova Spivack, grandson of Peter Drucker, and AI researcher Kristinn R. Thórisson. They were soon joined by Jim Wissner, who is now the company's Chief Architect. Thórisson was CTO of Radar Networks until 2004 when he joined Reykjavik University.

In February 2008 it was announced that the company raised a Series B venture round led by Velocity Interactive Group, Vulcan Capital and Draper Fisher Jurvetson.

The company's first product, Twine, is an online, social web service that was opened to the public on October 21, 2008.[3]


Radar Networks works on semantic web, online applications intended for the general public. Semantic web technologies are intended to extend the World Wide Web by adding a new, machine processable layer of data. Semantic web technologies have been used by several large organizations in private intranets, such as Citigroup and Eastman Kodak Co. to handle their data to increase efficiency.[4]

Semantic web services involve metadata markup of information (often text on webpages, documents or media such as images), using a markup language like RDF. An ontology is used to describe what the tags represent and how these things are related. An example of this is marking the text John with the tag person, and an ontology that describes that a person is a type of human. Such a contextual framework is intended to enable computers to understand and reason with data, thus making way for more intelligent data handling methods.[5]

Other companies working on semantic web technologies are, for example, AskMeNow, Garlik, Metaweb and Powerset. These types of technologies are often described as an evolution of Web 2.0 services that use non-semantic tag systems, such as Flickr and Technorati.


Twine is an online, social web service that combines features of forums, wikis, online databases and newsgroups.[6] It was announced on October 19, 2007 and remained in private status, offering limited invitations only for beta testing, until October 21, 2008 when it was opened to the public.[3] Twine is Radar Networks' first consumer product.

Twine services information storage, authoring and discovery through its website and browser-based tools. The service, intended for regular web users, attempts to automate certain processes related to data categorization and keyword-association (tagging).[7] The system employs natural language processing and machine learning to extract concepts from written text in user data[3] and express it using RDF triples tied to a semantic taxonomy based on concepts mined from Wikipedia.[7] This makes it easier for machines to process the data[8][9] and enables specifying types of information to search for on the Twine website, such as "person" or "location". Twine can be classified as a social network as it also has features such as adding contacts, sending private messages and sharing information.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ John Markoff (2006-11-12). "Entrepreneurs See Web Guided By Common Sense". New York Times. Retrieved 2007-08-14. 
  2. ^ Evri Inc. (2010-03-11). "Evri Announces Acquisition of Twine, Relaunches Consumer Site". Retrieved 2010-05-08. 
  3. ^ a b c Erica Naone (2008-09-21). "Untangling Web Information". Technology Review. Retrieved 2008-10-21. 
  4. ^ "A Web That Thinks Like You". BusinessWeek.com. 2007-07-09. Retrieved 2007-08-11. 
  5. ^ W3C Semantic Web FAQ
  6. ^ Rafe Needleman (2008-03-07). "Twine: The Semantic Web Takes Shape, with Twine". Cnet news. Retrieved 2008-10-20. 
  7. ^ a b Tim O'Reilly (2007-10-18). "Web2Summit: Radar Networks Unwinds twine.com". O'Reilly Radar. Retrieved 2007-10-20. 
  8. ^ W3C Semantic Web FAQ
  9. ^ Michael Copeland (2007-03-07). "Web 3.0: No Humans Required". CNNMoney.com. Retrieved 2007-08-11. 

External links[edit]

  • Minding the Planet — Nova Spivack's personal blog, CEO of Radar Networks
  • Twine — online service of Radar Networks