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80Legs Is Where [email protected] Meets Google

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logo-sub80Legs, a startup that aggregates CPU cycles and bandwidth to offer companies a Google-like web crawling service on demand, today launched its public beta at the DEMO conference in San Diego. The Houston-based company has raised $400,000 from Creeris Ventures to provide its web crawling service. 80Legs contracts with another Houston-based company funded by its investors to get access to volunteer’s CPU cycles, much like the [email protected] project, in which PC users offer up computer power to search for signals from extraterrestrials. 80Legs partner Plura Processing, which aggregates the cycles, pays affiliates to sign up users to volunteer their idle processing time in exchange for services like virtual gifts. Users can also give up bandwidth, which we wrote about earlier this year.

And the end result of all this computing largess is the 80Legs service, where market researchers, video-recognition startups, and even advertising companies can buy the ability to search the web on someone else’s infrastructure on a per-instance basis. It’s like having access to Google’s search capabilities on demand. For those who fancy a cheap web crawl, GigaOM readers have access to 50 invites. Just visit 80Legs and type in “gigaom” when you register. For more details, check out the video below.

4 Responses to “80Legs Is Where [email protected] Meets Google”

  1. I’m a big fan of 80Legs — they’ve got a truly innovative platform that’s going to really change how people think about getting a hold of lots and lots of data. Oh, and they’re great people to work with, to boot!

    My company, Swingly (, has been building apps for the 80Legs platform all summer. Our goal? To provide 80Legs (and their users) with the semantic search and text extraction tools to get the most out of their crawls. Want to get 5 million pages on a topic? You can take your chances on what you’ll get out of a crawl — or use Swingly’s text extraction tools to only pull down pages that mention certain kinds of names, attributes, sentiments, or relationships!

    Swingly currently offers access to more than 2500+ different kinds of names — most of those will be available to 80Legs customers in the very near future.

    — Andy Hickl (CEO,