Stephen Baker of business week says:
I talked on Friday to Jim Barnett, former ceo of Altavista and, later, a top exec at Overture. He's planning to launch a next-gen advertising network called Turn Inc. in the next several months. He has $10 million in venture funding, and some 16 PhDs in-house. The idea is that advanced search will target advertisements to users with a precision we've not yet seen. All that can be said at this point: We'll see.
The idea that 16 PhDs in-house sounds very familiar - and not always a great thing. Turn has side stepped a problem that WhizBang had which is a very focused product.
Jimi Shanahan, formerly of Clairvoyance, is the Chief Scientist at Turn and was in attendance at the recent WOMBAT conference (Word of Mouth Basic Training). One can guess at the relationships between online advertising and the word of mouth movement.