Archive for the 'Social networks' Category - an open-ended bulletin board with tags

Saturday, August 20th, 2005

Written using Ruby on Rails, could quite possibly be a work of genius. I haven’t decided yet. It’s still too new and I haven’t seen the full potential of it yet. In the “About” section, the creator insists that “It’s great for online classifieds, recipes, reviews, rants, scrapbooks, and useful information of all kinds.” Yes, it can be used for all those things, but I’m not sure whether this is the perfect format for any of them. It is a bulletin board, but more in the sense of the corkboard kind with all its chaos, not like the online kind which is often known as a forum. All the posts appear on the front page. And without categories, it may be hard to browse for things — you have to use the search function instead.

Online social tagging is not about sharing

Friday, August 19th, 2005

A landmark study from the HP research department finds that social bookmarking is less about sharing than we thought. A large portion of the tags on used by the study group to describe documents on the web were self-referencing (ie mycomments) or for self-organising purposes (ie toread). As an example, in the last 15 days, over 30,000 links had no tags in them, suggesting that they were less for sharing than for self-tracking. But this was not a study of motives, but rather of finding out how links were used and how they were being described. Probably the next step is to distribute a qualitative survey via to its users, asking for information to provide insights into motives of tagging. - share your software list with others

Wednesday, August 17th, 2005

I like because it introduces me to new softwares for OSX. But unlike other software directories, this one comes with recommendations. I get to see what other people are using and have enjoyed so much that they tell me about them. Sometimes, in the descriptions, I even find out why they liked the software. I’m subscribed to the RSS feed for OSX.

Why NYT and Yahoo News’ need to track their stories is losing them readers

Monday, August 8th, 2005

Have you ever wondered why so few people bookmark New York Times stories on I mean they hardly ever appear on the popular list. Not even the recent Karl Rove stories. There is a simple reason. If you have a look at the end of the url of each NYT story, there is a unique session id stuck on it (after .html). It serves no purpose except for NYT to track which pages you visit on the site. But not everyone has the patience or the know-how to remove the unique session id data before they post the article to so that only the real url remains.

That means the same article may get posted to hundreds or thousands of times, but because the url is different every time, assumes they are all unique web pages because tracks them by url. As a result, it will appear as if the article has been unpopular.

This is not to say that NY Times articles don’t get passed around. They do. But only when some really popular site like Kottke or Techdirt has linked to them. Then the url they used (with the unique id) will get posted and re-posted. The unique id is great for tracking the popularity of stories and the flow of traffic on, but the stories would be even more popular if people knew they were popular. That’s the whole point behind social bookmarking sites like To share articles you liked and to read articles recommended by others.

But NYT is not the only purveyor of this mistake. Yahoo News also adds an unnecessary user session id to the end of its urls. So no matter how many times their stories get posted to or, they never make the popular list either. It’s unnecessary because it would be just as simple to embed any user id into their webpages when they are dynamically being generated. And although it isn’t their problem, the admins of could take the initiative to strip session ids from urls. Why, because superfluous data is being added by their users into their database and this is causing errors in the popularity of articles on their site. So there are a few possible solutions, but it doesn’t look like any one is going to make the first move. So it’s up to you. The next time you post a NYT or Yahoo News article to, please do remember to strip off the unique session id first. Instant messenger geo-location social networking software

Sunday, August 7th, 2005 is a tiny geo-location social networking software, kind of like, except Placesite was restricted to users of a local wifi network. Meetro is more expansive and rides on AIM and ICQ networks. Basically it tells you who is nearby and gives you their profiles and the opportunity to contact them for real-life socialising. But I think the power might not be from socialising. It might be from recommendations that Meetro users make of local facilities like restaurants and hairdressers and schools. Meetro is currently only for Windows users. - get emails on new Flickr photos

Saturday, July 16th, 2005

This site lets you subscribe to a photo page, getting email notifications whenever new images are added. The main reason I really like this site is because the makers had spent some time dwelling on who will use it, why they will use it and how they will use it. It is clear from this quote:

Notifyr is built so that users don’t need to register in order to use it. You can subscribe anyone to your photo page by sending them a Notifyr link containing your Flickr page address and their email, like:

More often than not, I see ideas for websites that focus more on the features of the site than on the users and they lose a key opportunity for relevancy by that negligence. - get emails on new Flickr photos