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50 Best Websites 2007

You hear about a video-say, a clip of Japanese stage performers acting out a slow-motion food fight -and with a quick keyword search, you have your choice of links to where to view it. That is the beauty of Blinkx, a video search engine that keeps adding new tricks to its repertoire, like the clickable video wall that you can embed in your blog. This is a grid of video frames that links to the latest clips by topic (world news, entertainment, sports, business) and Blinkx automatically updates it throughout the day as new videos become available (the wall is also on the Blinkx home page). The new Blinkx Remote Blinkx Remote helps you find sites where you can (legally) watch or purchase full-length TV shows; it also related snippets such as interviews with cast members.

Rather than relying on content feeds from partners, Blinkx, like Google, uses its own spiders to crawl the web to index video content; its database currently boasts more than 12 million hours of video from some 130 media sources. Blinkx also uses voice-recognition technology to parse through, and appropriately tag, each segment, so search results cut right to the relevant minute inside of a longer segment. It doesn’t download the content, but rather provides a preview and links you back to the original source. Its technology is spreading; Blinkx powers video search at the recently revamped Ask, Lycos, and AtomUploads, the Atom Films spinoff that invites users to upload, play, and share your video clips, cartoons and Flash games.

Google’s own video search also keeps getting better. The engine recently added YouTube clips to its search results, as well as content from Metacafe and other major video sites. If you’d rather browse than conduct a targeted search, check out Online Video Guide, an exhaustive directory organized by category (movies and TV, sports, health/fitness, adult content) and offers its own top 100 list.