Notable this week

Yahoo! launched a desktop Twitter monitoring app using Adobe Air. Nothing groundbreaking here. But it does raise a question: When will someone in online real estate develop an Air app for monitoring listings? Sure, mobile is important, but most of us still plant our butts in front of a computer for most of the day. Real-time updates on the desktop would be killer for serious home buyers, or people thinking about selling. Or how about real-time market analytics from the MLS delivered the same way? NASDAQ does it.

Zillow’s going to set up newspapers with online real estate sections. Good move for them. But why must newspapers continue to punt? At least there’s dignity in a Hail Mary when the clock’s running out. There are options.

I was in Vegas this week at the Prudential Convention. They have some interesting new things cooking. But they also have one old thing I think will become increasingly relevant: The largest VOW network in existence, a product of the company’s acquisition of eRealty several years ago. It will be interesting to watch the network’s progress as VOWs go mainstream, and brokers start to grok the difference between traffic and prospects.

A company called Hunch was launched this week by one of Flikr’s founders. Here’s how they describe themselves:

Hunch is a decision-making site that gets smarter the more it’s used.

After asking you 10 questions or fewer, Hunch will propose a concrete and customized result for hundreds of decisions of every kind: What kind of car should I buy? Should I switch to a Mac? Should I dump my boyfriend? Where should I go on vacation? Should I get a tattoo?

Sign up for the beta. It’s pretty cool. I’d like to see something like this in real estate. A ton of data is great, but a smart decision support tool is even better. And what a great tool for qualifying prospects!