SiliconBeat published an unconfirmed rumor that Google is looking to pay about $75 million to buy Olive Software, a company which specializes in being able to convert PDFs, microfilm and other files to XML, while still being able to keep the original document format in tact for online browsing.
Many traditional publishing companies are too lazy or shortsighted to see the value of the web. They are also afraid of losing their ad dollars. Many web advertisers are too cheap / thrifty to do much magazine advertising. The average page of web content is likely of far lower quality than the average newspaper or magazine article.
What if Google found a way to bridge the gap? What if they had almost all published information in a large XML database? Google Base on steroids? In that scenario will outlier non interactive non community content based websites have much value?