Following your favorite celeb or technology idol online will become a little easier next week. A real-time search engine turned social site, Justspotted.com, will identify the whereabouts of celebrities through a relationship with Twitter that gives it access to public tweets. The technology relies on natural-language filters to determine tweets from celebrity sightings.
Think real-time tracker rather than real-time search. JustSpotted.com processes about 50 million tweets daily, but filters through natural-language technology the actual location on about 700 celebrity sightings. The technology relies on Google Maps to pinpoint location and can easily scale to 1,000 or more each day, according to JustSpotted CEO AJ Asver.
The social site made the transition from real-time search engine when Asver "realized with Google coming into the real-time search space it would become difficult to complete as a destination site."
JustSpotted.com will offer articles, photos and videos -- all shareable content. The real-time feed from Twitter will stream information on celebrity sightings. Similar to a Facebook news feed, each celebrity will have their own page that aggregates the content. Today, there are 7,000 listed, but more are added daily.
Site visitors also can become fans of the celebrities and sign up for news blasts delivered to their email account. Celebrities also can tap into the list to communicate with fans. There are plans to pull in information from Facebook and Foursquare, too.
For example, Asver says, about 3% of Twitter's infrastructure is dedicated to Justin Bieber. Celebrities like Bieber could inject content related to musical tours into blasts through JustSpotted.com.
Techies who can't get enough of Silicon Valley celebs will have a JustSpotted version, too.
All the information aggregated and pushed out is public information. And although it's considered a real-time experience, "we don't give you enough information fast enough for anyone to run to location and stalk the person," Asver says. "We really care about fans following celebrities they love," he adds. "We're trying to bring people closer."
Ron Conway -- an early investor in Twitter, Facebook and Google -- also infused cash in JustSpotted.com, along with Y Combinator, Avalon Ventures, and Michael Birch, who founded Bebo and sold it to AOL.
Update on Oct. 16:Several reports explain that Twitter turned off the feed to JustSpotted.com. According to a JustSpotted.com spokesperson, the company continues to use Twitter's publicly available API, the same one many other third-party developers and Web sites tap. "The termination of the firehose has no impact on JustSpotted's ability to aggregate tweets," she says.
JustSpotted, then known as Scoopler, had previously licensed Twitter's "firehose" data feed of all public tweets for its real-time search engine, Scoopler.com. "JustSpotted.com is not the product we licensed, and we have terminated their agreement," according to a Twitter spokesperson.