I had a very informative meeting with LookSmart CEO David Hills (formerly of 24/7, About, Cox Enterprises and elsewhere). He acknowledged some of LookSmart's past strategic missteps and gave me an overview of the company's new three-pronged strategy. (Impressively he did it all in about 20 minutes since I was late.)
Hills told me he had essentially eliminated click fraud from LookSmart's network. He also indicated that the company had considerable money in the bank. And finally we discussed the John Battelle theory/rumor about LookSmart being behind (or partly behind) Ask's new PPC engine. He replied with a friendly, "No comment."
I (and others) had given LookSmart up essentially for dead. Clearly that's not the case I'm pleased to say.