Archive for the ‘Recommendation Content’ Category

Information Gathering was a class I took at university. As a process, this a very important part for researching and creating web applications. However what are the effects of continuous information gathering in one area?

10 years ago, I thought that the refining process of information would happen quite quickly, because information from websites that we tend to use on a daily basis like shopping data etc, is fairly finite.

But the key sites that hold and gather information as the one stop shop for basic necessities of living are still hard to define.

A few however have clearly emerged for example, if you happen to be the best at creating the basic services of your industry and not necessarily the first, you have a good chance of making your position on the Internet number one in your market place. Examples of this would include Search Engine – Google, Online Book Store – Amazon, Online Auction – Ebay, Reference – Wikipedia and Social Networking – Facebook, whilst the rest cover a vast plethora of niche and other fragmented market places.

Maybe the future will be the same, with just a few more defining sites or companies emerging over the next 10 years whilst the rest of the fragmented market place continues to evolve and fragment even further.

Using the same basic principal of continuous information gathering, sites like Quora are aiming to create these types of one stop shops to find information quicker.

Content courtesy of Quora :

About Quora

Quora is a continually improving collection of questions and answers created, edited, and organized by everyone who uses it. The most important thing is to have each question page become the best possible resource for someone who wants to know about the question.

Accumulating Knowledge

People use Quora to document the world around them. Over time, the database of knowledge should grow and grow until almost everything that anyone wants to know is available in the system. When knowledge is put into Quora, it is there forever to be shared with anyone in the future who is interested.

Another question and answer type of site, this one however throws in a twist of Wiki, in that there is a continuous process if information refining going on by its users.

Created by a few ex-Facebook employees last year and now released on an invite only model, maybe Quora will be one of the next big sites of the future.

Find out more about Quora at :

http://www.quora.com/about

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Google is always coming up with new ideas, some of the ground breaking, some of them not.

One of Google’s latest releases is Google Reader Play. It’s a different way to view content on the web, by bringing together images, video and text in a visual slide show rather than a text based list.

Content is shown to you depending on what you have mark as liked or disliked.

This is a cool idea because the visual aspect of the content has the chance to communicate messages using a ‘global visual language’. People all over the world can understand information from a visual point of view. For example seeing an image of a volcano erupting is something anyone can relate to, and if you want more information, you simply have to click through to the hyperlinked post.

Although, having just tried to log into Google Reader Play, the browser just continued to load and nothing happened. Hopefully these bugs will be ironed out soon, and Google may have brought to the market place a new way to view content.

Find out more about Google Reader Play at :

http://www.google.com/reader/play/#item/new/0

Read a review of Google Reader Play at :

http://www.wired.com/gadgetlab/2010/03/google-reader-play-ipad-friendly-news-reader/

There seems to be a few sites out there using the concept of ‘recommendations by other users’. Here’s one from New York called Hunch.

Hunch says it gives you customized recommendations and gets smarter the more you use it.

One of the current most popular questions was ‘Should I get a TiVo Premiere?’ Funny they mention that, because I just wrote about it a couple of days ago. Hunch then asks you a series of questions, after which, based on your answers, it gives you a decision. I have to say the questions were quite thorough, and could easily be considered as real.

Though I think this has more to do with my question choice. I need to keep giving it harder questions and see how it copes. My next question would be, do I buy a 3D TV or wait for TiVo? I can’t afford everything Hunch.

Find out more about Hunch at : http://hunch.com/


Music used to be simple. You heard a track on the radio, you purchased the record, you made tapes. Nice.

Then came the Internet, and that all changed. Peer-to-peer file sharing created the need for free music. Although file sharing still continues to exist, there is now a significant market for legal streaming services. Music lovers are streaming free music from a variety of sources like Spotify etc.

When Last FM arrived on the scene in 2002 they used a music recommender system called “Audioscrobbler”. It was slightly different with its streaming model in that it recommends music, videos and concerts based on what you listen to. They do this by telling you what other music people are listening to based on the choice of artist you have made. In March 2009 subscription services was introduced to some countries.

But what if it was the people instead of a computer system recommending music, add in the twist of being paid for those recommendations, then sharing music and more importantly making money, may have found a new model within the music industry.

Start-up mflow may have just come up with such a model. They understand that a lot of music that comes into our lives comes from recommendations and therefore could be used a source for music searchers everywhere. The big question is the catalog, without a choice users could find this model a turn off, and therefore the community could fall apart. It’s a good idea, but whether it can work is a bigger question.

Looking to launch in April 2010 mflow whose tag line is ‘music is better shared’, quote some of the following on their site :

We don’t want be told what we ‘might like’ by a software program.

We don’t want to stare at an empty search bar… “a whole world of music at my fingertips, and I can’t think of anything to look for…”

We don’t want to have to subscribe to anything.

We don’t want adverts.

We just want a way for our mates to send us music they think rocks.

Find out more about mflow at : http://www.mflow.com/

Updated 12/03/10, mflow were interviewed on Technology Unplugged Sky News, watch it now :

Aardvark was founded in late 2007 by Max Ventilla, Damon Horowitz, Nathan Stoll, and Rob Spiro.

Aardvark was conceived as the first Social Search engine: a way to find people, not web pages, that have specific information. In 2008 the Aardvark team built out the core Aardvark product, while conducting an extensiveuser-researchcampaign to refine the user experience for this new Social Search paradigm.

This work culminated in a series of beta releases in Summer 2009, making Aardvark available over email, Instant Messenger, Twitter, and the iPhone. Following the popular success of these applications, Aardvark publically launched Social Search on the web in October 2009, open to everyone atvark.com.

In September 2008, Aardvark closed Series A financing withAugust Capital, with participation from Baseline Ventures. The company is proud to have had over a dozen well-known technology thought leaders as individual investors, including Michael Dearing, Sep Kamvar, Marc Andreessen, Deep Nishar, Sean Fanning, Aydin Senkut, Shervin Pishevar, and others.

Over 2009, the company built an amazing technical team of over twenty people, including engineers from each of Silicon Valley’s major technology companies, four AI Ph.D.s, and founders from a dozen different successful startups. Andwe’re still hiring.

In February 2010 Aardvark was acquired by Google, and continues to operate as part of the Google family of products.

Find out more at http://vark.com/