Product & Startup Builder

Filtering by Category: "front page"

Added to the Megite Index

Added on by Chris Saad.
Over the last few days some new stuff has happened in relation to this blog.

First, we seem to keep appearing on the TechMeme related discussion section whenever I post about a topic that happens to be covered there. Second, someone from Megite (or an automated bot) has commented on a post and declared that we should be congratulated because we are now part of the Megite index.

Does Megite work the same way that TechMeme works?

This is how I understand it:
  1. They crawl a subset of blogs (the 'A-List') and then algorithmically determine and cluster the topics they're talking about at any given time.
  2. They look for outgoing or incoming links from those blogs to find additional discussions to link to/cluster.
  3. They look for patterns in outgoing links (from their index of blogs 'A-list blogs') to determine which blogs are worthy enough to be added to the index.

If this is the case, does this mean we have somehow been automatically determined as a Quality/A-list Blog by the Megite engine? Should we expect to be profiled on their home page more often now?

At the risk of angering the Megite gods, who's to say that this is a worthy blog? What is the definition. Is it based on how many A-listers link to us? How many comments we get? How often we post about similar topics to A-listers? How many links we get from A-listers?

And who's to say what the A-list finds interesting is relevant to everyone - or to me.

These questions are actually more relevant for Techmeme because Megite at least has a nifty feature whereby you can upload your OPML and it starts to build a personal homepage just for you. That's a great feature.

I have also met Gabe from Techmeme and he's a great guy. He tells me he is cooking up lots of new features so I am sure it's all in the pipeline.

But I am still interested in what constitutes a worthy blog for the public 'front page'.

As for Tailrank I'm not sure if it works the same way either. Kevin has not taken the time to explain it to me. I wonder if we are in their index yet? What's the go with that Kevin!

In any case - if we are now part of a few blogs that are considered Megite worthy - thanks. If this is a normal occurrence and nothing special (maybe even some comment spam) then... I am less grateful hah.

Update: Kevin posts about the Megite comment spam issue as well. He seems to agree this might be attention getting behavior that is a little over the mark as well. I think that if it was a personal message with a personal name or even a private note via email (our contact details are not hidden) it might be a better approach.

Creating passionate crowds

Added on by Chris Saad.
I've posted before about Digg and its deep underlying philosophical difference to Google. To recap, while Digg uses explicit 'Wisdom of crowds' approaches to generating a front page, Google uses an algorithm (which takes into account implicit votes based on links) to generate its Google News front page.

These are fundamental and philosophical differences and when the issue of Digg gaming came up (and will come up again I'm sure) it was an important discussion to have.

In fact, I recently came across a wonderful article from Kathy Sierra called 'Dumbness of Crowds' where she rightly states that the term 'Wisdom of Crowds' was actually meant in sarcasm. It was supposed to highlight that crowds (read: mobs) are actually quite stupid. Real intelligence comes when measuring individual actions in aggregate (and even then in some applications and not others - e.g. designing by committee produces bland or Frankenstein results) - rather than giving individuals collective and visible control over a process.

As I've stated before, the problem with both Digg and Google is that in an era of hyperchoice and information overload these engines only show 'What's popular' instead of 'What's Personally Relevant',

Today, however, DayLife launched, to a little criticism from one of its investors (who just happens to be Michael Arrington). It has been a long time coming and, as a result, seems to have felt a little 'over anticipation' from some in the community.

Worse still (shock/horror/sarcasm) it does not use the "Wisdom of Crowds" OR a Popularity Algorithm to generate its front page. It in fact proudly and loudly declares that it uses a 3rd, age old technique - human editors.

I'm sure the DayLife founders are very passionate about their company and I wish them best of luck with their plans. Maybe in a noisy media landscape, A site that shows simple, visual and effective headlines on the front page will be a refreshing change?

Personally though I look forward to the 4th 'front page' philosophy/technique. Using a Personal Relevancy engine to generate a front page.