At the SIP Symposium (at Stanford), there were some guys from the Freebase development crew. This was my first exposure to Freebase and I was intrigued with the idea. According to Kurt Bollacker (the Chief Scientist) the reason they were at the symposium was to "get people using our data". I also learned from him that they were VC funded and currently had about 60 developers.
They have built upon the existing data sources, such as Wikipedia, and have added structurally typed data to go along with it. The resulting data repository is then easily accessible via the Freebase API.
It'll be interesting to see what happens with it.