July 25, 2005 7:40 AM PDT
Yahoo acquires 'widget' engine
Yahoo plans to run the widgets via XML feeds. The applications can perform any of a range of functions, from informing people of their Wi-Fi signal strength to dishing up the local weather to providing a battery monitor, according to a notice posted on Konfabulator's Web site.
"When we first thought of Konfabulator, one of the key pieces was accessing Internet content. Well guess what Yahoo has boatloads of?" Konfabulator said on its site. "And what's really great is that they're starting to open it up to everyone in a format that's useable outside the traditional browser, as XML feeds."
According to Konfabulator, the acquisition also marks the formal launch of Yahoo's Developer Network.
"Since we're kick-starting Yahoo's Developer Network, this means our current Konfabulator community will become the founding members of Yahoo's Developer community," according to a posting on Konfabulator's site.
A Yahoo representative said that the company had a developer network prior to its Pixoria acquisition, but that with this deal, Yahoo plans to formalize its relationship with developers.
Konfabulator, which had charged rates from $19.95 for a single user license to $2,500 for a worldwide site license, said that its service will now be free and that it will refund purchases of its version 2.0 or later.
Yahoo's acquisition comes as it is looking for ways to get outside developers more involved with writing applications for its content and putting greater pressure on its archrival Google. Both companies, for example, started sharing their respective code for their mapping service with third-party developers this summer.
According to a Yahoo representative, the deal closed Tuesday. Financial terms were not disclosed.
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