France (and Germany) are investing large funds in multimedia search so they can beat USA in this area by leapfrogging USA. This was announced with some other important projects.
The importance of the News is clearly demonstrated by the quote from none other than the President of France:
â€œQuaero, defined as a digital information process and an easy access to multimedia content, is a major Franco-German project built with Thomson, France Telecom, and Exalead. Faced with the exponential growth of search engines, France, with its German partners and tomorrow, I hope, its European partners, had to draw level with this key challengeâ€?, commented Jacques Chirac in his speech.
It is clear that the next frontier of search is going beyond keywords, the keyword box, and the linear list displays. This announcement suggests that the race in this area is really heating up because in USA, most leading companies have been emphasizing video search. So, Let the Search Competitions Begin!!!
IMO, to beat USA in the multemedia feild is very diffucult. There are hundred thousands of companies in the Silicon Valley and the regular sponsors and funndings that they have been getting for years.They have a strong hold on the IT feild and will continue to have that for the comming decades.