TechFuga makes it clear TechMeme is not innovating

OK, OK, I’m back to my blog thanks to popular demand. :-)

One new service came up this morning that caught my eye: TechFuga.

As Louis Gray says, it’s like TechMeme and AllTop had a baby.

Now, whether or not you think this will prove successful (the jury is out, especially since TechMeme’s traffic has flatlined the past year) this points to something else: TechMeme hasn’t innovated and that lack of innovation is opening the door to competitors.

How has it not innovated? TechMeme has not acknowledged that there is something interesting going on elsewhere. That people are using other aggregators, like Reddit and Digg, along with other social networks, like Twitter and friendfeed, to get their news.

Now that we see a service that, while imperfect, demonstrates what new features look like, we see that TechMeme has stalled.

Gabe Rivera (he’s the founder of TechMeme), are you going to answer this, or are you going to keep on the flat track saying that only “high end articles and blogs” matter?

Comments

  1. Robert, I think you’re just trolling me now. Traffic’s not flat and I suspect you know that. The other stuff you said is even dumber so I’ll just not respond.

  2. Robert, I think you’re just trolling me now. Traffic’s not flat and I suspect you know that. The other stuff you said is even dumber so I’ll just not respond.

  3. See this is why you should blog more Robert. At first glance Techfuga looks really cool. I will be checking it out. On the other hand, you could have just tweeted that =p.

  4. See this is why you should blog more Robert. At first glance Techfuga looks really cool. I will be checking it out. On the other hand, you could have just tweeted that =p.

  5. My own view is that TechMeme is fine, they are providing a useful service. At any point in time there’s always a site which is the “Daypop” of the time, and right now that is TechMeme. I guess they have to worry about what might be better, but Digg and Reddit certainly aren’t as useful as TechMeme right now…

  6. My own view is that TechMeme is fine, they are providing a useful service. At any point in time there’s always a site which is the “Daypop” of the time, and right now that is TechMeme. I guess they have to worry about what might be better, but Digg and Reddit certainly aren’t as useful as TechMeme right now…

  7. Gabe, you’re completely missing the point. Just because TechMeme’s traffic isn’t flat, it doesn’t mean you’re innovating.

    If TechMeme is ignoring social networks like Reddit, Digg, Twitter, and Friendfeed to get news, and only aggregating from “high end articles and blogs”, you’re missing out on a lot of interesting stuff.

    I’m not saying you are, I’m saying “if” what Scoble is saying is true.

    Anyway, welcome back Scoble, I’m glad Mike got through to you. :-)

  8. Gabe, you’re completely missing the point. Just because TechMeme’s traffic isn’t flat, it doesn’t mean you’re innovating.

    If TechMeme is ignoring social networks like Reddit, Digg, Twitter, and Friendfeed to get news, and only aggregating from “high end articles and blogs”, you’re missing out on a lot of interesting stuff.

    I’m not saying you are, I’m saying “if” what Scoble is saying is true.

    Anyway, welcome back Scoble, I’m glad Mike got through to you. :-)

  9. Why is it that I never seem to be able to do anything here but troll anymore?? I don’t like any more than you do, Robert, but I gotta say what I gotta say…

    Ole: The traffic stats go to show that a lot more people could give a shit about the “daypop” as you put it… and would rather have a more vetted list… TechMeme is based on A.) What Gabe likes (and I don’t like Gabe so I could give a shit what he likes) and B.) what A-C List Tech Bloggers are linking to (I like a lot more than just the tiny, self-centered blogosphere of “Tech”… so TechMeme, to me, is a valueless list of egotism and bias.)

    P.S. lol @ gabe “Traffic’s not flat and I suspect you know that. “… I suspect he *doesn’t* know that.., hence his saying “Traffic has flatlined”. TechMeme is hella easy to game (if you were so inclined) and reaches approximately no-one outside of “the 250″ (thanks to Valleywag for that phrase). So you might want to reconsider what you think of as “even dumber”… (see: a mirror).

    P.P.S. AllTop is horrific… their content pages leave *everything* to be desired…

    P.P.P.S. Combining an utterly useless experience with a horrific experience… hmm… can you surmise what my opinion of TechFuga may be??

    P.P.P.P.S. (to keep with the “Troll” motif I’m working on, here is a 100% off topic post-script) I sure love to see that “Scobleizer is back”!! :-D

  10. Why is it that I never seem to be able to do anything here but troll anymore?? I don’t like any more than you do, Robert, but I gotta say what I gotta say…

    Ole: The traffic stats go to show that a lot more people could give a shit about the “daypop” as you put it… and would rather have a more vetted list… TechMeme is based on A.) What Gabe likes (and I don’t like Gabe so I could give a shit what he likes) and B.) what A-C List Tech Bloggers are linking to (I like a lot more than just the tiny, self-centered blogosphere of “Tech”… so TechMeme, to me, is a valueless list of egotism and bias.)

    P.S. lol @ gabe “Traffic’s not flat and I suspect you know that. “… I suspect he *doesn’t* know that.., hence his saying “Traffic has flatlined”. TechMeme is hella easy to game (if you were so inclined) and reaches approximately no-one outside of “the 250″ (thanks to Valleywag for that phrase). So you might want to reconsider what you think of as “even dumber”… (see: a mirror).

    P.P.S. AllTop is horrific… their content pages leave *everything* to be desired…

    P.P.P.S. Combining an utterly useless experience with a horrific experience… hmm… can you surmise what my opinion of TechFuga may be??

    P.P.P.P.S. (to keep with the “Troll” motif I’m working on, here is a 100% off topic post-script) I sure love to see that “Scobleizer is back”!! :-D

  11. The 2 things that is different between Daily Rotation and Tech Fuga is the graphical look and the developing news items. Daily Rotation has much larger selection of websites you can view when you log in to your account. In terms of content depth, I know Daily Rotation is oceans deeper than Tech Fuga.

  12. The 2 things that is different between Daily Rotation and Tech Fuga is the graphical look and the developing news items. Daily Rotation has much larger selection of websites you can view when you log in to your account. In terms of content depth, I know Daily Rotation is oceans deeper than Tech Fuga.

  13. Hi Robert – I noticed yesterday that you subscribed to one of the TechWatching Twitter feeds (http://twitter.com/techwatching) – thanks, and I hope you find it informative and timely. That feed is the output of http://techwatching.com

    I wanted to share a bit of background on TechWatching (TW) with you, tying into the theme of innovative memetracking.

    (1) Like its progenitors (TechMeme, etc.), TW reads feeds and links together stories based on link behaviour, keyword analysis, and human editorializing.

    Using Twitter, TW takes things a step further, however: Twitter provides attention data that feeds back into my algorithm. As each story is presented in concise, identical fashion on Twitter, I view twitter click-throughs as great organic indicators of interest – i.e.: clicks aren’t driven by page placement, font size, or what have you.

    The twitter attention data seems to be driving some interesting results, generating a page that covers many of the same things as Techmeme, but that also surfaces some really different stories.

    (2) TW adds wiki features to the mix. Click through to a story cluster:

    http://techwatching.com/cluster/133079

    That page is broken down into the “cluster” at the top, which includes stories that either explicitly linked to one another, or have been “editorialized” together. Below are “related” stories, collected based on simple keywording, that anyone can add to the cluster or remove from the page.

    This is all pretty experimental; I don’t know what kind of success or abuse a “wikified” memetracker will experience. But: I’m watching it happen, and iterating the features rapidly.

    FWIW: TechFuga looks like its suffering from many of the issues that I’ve worked through or am in the process of working-through on TW – false story correlations (i.e.: everything “blackberry” being lumped together even if the stories are about wildly divergent blackberry-memes), as well as spurious keywords entering the mix (like the story clump apparently based on the word “day” http://www.techfuga.com/23122008/two-days-until-christmas-day). Good luck to them. They have a long way to go, and turning to AllTop-style meta-analysis of other memetrackers isn’t going to help.

    Anyway: I hope you find TW useful; if you’ve got a moment, it would be great to get your feedback.

    Regards,
    –Rod Edwards

  14. Hi Robert – I noticed yesterday that you subscribed to one of the TechWatching Twitter feeds (http://twitter.com/techwatching) – thanks, and I hope you find it informative and timely. That feed is the output of http://techwatching.com

    I wanted to share a bit of background on TechWatching (TW) with you, tying into the theme of innovative memetracking.

    (1) Like its progenitors (TechMeme, etc.), TW reads feeds and links together stories based on link behaviour, keyword analysis, and human editorializing.

    Using Twitter, TW takes things a step further, however: Twitter provides attention data that feeds back into my algorithm. As each story is presented in concise, identical fashion on Twitter, I view twitter click-throughs as great organic indicators of interest – i.e.: clicks aren’t driven by page placement, font size, or what have you.

    The twitter attention data seems to be driving some interesting results, generating a page that covers many of the same things as Techmeme, but that also surfaces some really different stories.

    (2) TW adds wiki features to the mix. Click through to a story cluster:

    http://techwatching.com/cluster/133079

    That page is broken down into the “cluster” at the top, which includes stories that either explicitly linked to one another, or have been “editorialized” together. Below are “related” stories, collected based on simple keywording, that anyone can add to the cluster or remove from the page.

    This is all pretty experimental; I don’t know what kind of success or abuse a “wikified” memetracker will experience. But: I’m watching it happen, and iterating the features rapidly.

    FWIW: TechFuga looks like its suffering from many of the issues that I’ve worked through or am in the process of working-through on TW – false story correlations (i.e.: everything “blackberry” being lumped together even if the stories are about wildly divergent blackberry-memes), as well as spurious keywords entering the mix (like the story clump apparently based on the word “day” http://www.techfuga.com/23122008/two-days-until-christmas-day). Good luck to them. They have a long way to go, and turning to AllTop-style meta-analysis of other memetrackers isn’t going to help.

    Anyway: I hope you find TW useful; if you’ve got a moment, it would be great to get your feedback.

    Regards,
    –Rod Edwards

  15. This is Joao from TechFuga: my thanks to all of you for your comments, special Robert for bringing our site to the public. We are gathering all feedback and will follow up with new features and a few adjustments in coming days. “Search” and “Developing News” sections are not live yet, but in a few days, we plan to launch them. Thanks you all we really appreciate your support and your feedback (positive or negative)…Joao

  16. This is Joao from TechFuga: my thanks to all of you for your comments, special Robert for bringing our site to the public. We are gathering all feedback and will follow up with new features and a few adjustments in coming days. “Search” and “Developing News” sections are not live yet, but in a few days, we plan to launch them. Thanks you all we really appreciate your support and your feedback (positive or negative)…Joao

  17. I’ll look at TechFuga later, but I definitely discovered that subscribing to a small number of tech blogs brings up most interesting news. If there’s something I’ll miss – well, whatever. I want to get 80% of the news in 20% of the time, I don’t care about the other 20% I’d have to spend all day on retrieving. After all, I’ve got a job.

    More important: Thank you for blogging again, Robert!

  18. I’ll look at TechFuga later, but I definitely discovered that subscribing to a small number of tech blogs brings up most interesting news. If there’s something I’ll miss – well, whatever. I want to get 80% of the news in 20% of the time, I don’t care about the other 20% I’d have to spend all day on retrieving. After all, I’ve got a job.

    More important: Thank you for blogging again, Robert!

  19. Huh. Remember Uncov.com and their startup “persai?” IIRC, persai was supposed to be a personalized, learning aggregator. I popped by to see what state it was in:

    http://persai.com

    Now redirects to “pressflip.com” which appears to be a really thin “persistent search” service over google.

    too bad. After all of the vitriol of uncov, I’d hope for something at least interesting from the team.

  20. Huh. Remember Uncov.com and their startup “persai?” IIRC, persai was supposed to be a personalized, learning aggregator. I popped by to see what state it was in:

    http://persai.com

    Now redirects to “pressflip.com” which appears to be a really thin “persistent search” service over google.

    too bad. After all of the vitriol of uncov, I’d hope for something at least interesting from the team.

  21. @scobleizer It’s easy to say flatlined when you are refering to Unique Visitors, most sites will see a flatline in UVs at a certain point. What’s worse is that, with the exception of visits, the other stats are flatlining. It’s certainly underperforming when compared to FF. I hardly ever used techmeme as I just disliked it on the first impression. (I know, not very Malcolm Gladwell of me.)

  22. @scobleizer It’s easy to say flatlined when you are refering to Unique Visitors, most sites will see a flatline in UVs at a certain point. What’s worse is that, with the exception of visits, the other stats are flatlining. It’s certainly underperforming when compared to FF. I hardly ever used techmeme as I just disliked it on the first impression. (I know, not very Malcolm Gladwell of me.)

  23. Isn’t this like the portals from the mid-90′s? Its just a collection of feeds… I already do that innovation with my own start page. (alternatively, poor man style, save everything in a Firefox folder, and let it open up all in new tabs :P)

  24. Isn’t this like the portals from the mid-90′s? Its just a collection of feeds… I already do that innovation with my own start page. (alternatively, poor man style, save everything in a Firefox folder, and let it open up all in new tabs :P)

  25. Rod… ding ding ding ding!

    Those who can’t do, talk a lot of shit. Look at Owen Thomas. And Ted Dzuiba. If they have kids, what do they tell ‘em that they do each day? “Oh, I give a lot of people shit, including those that happen to be innocent bystanders. I don’t actually make anything useful or even know how. I just deconstruct, bully, attack, and blather a lot about things I don’t know.”

    So is it any wonder that pressflip sucks?

    {and yes, I realize I’m being a little bit hypocritical here}

    And while I don’t always agree with Robert or how he expresses himself, I think he *does* give support and traffic to a lot of interesting up-and-coming players, and he sometimes provides some valuable general insight about stuff.

  26. Rod… ding ding ding ding!

    Those who can’t do, talk a lot of shit. Look at Owen Thomas. And Ted Dzuiba. If they have kids, what do they tell ‘em that they do each day? “Oh, I give a lot of people shit, including those that happen to be innocent bystanders. I don’t actually make anything useful or even know how. I just deconstruct, bully, attack, and blather a lot about things I don’t know.”

    So is it any wonder that pressflip sucks?

    {and yes, I realize I’m being a little bit hypocritical here}

    And while I don’t always agree with Robert or how he expresses himself, I think he *does* give support and traffic to a lot of interesting up-and-coming players, and he sometimes provides some valuable general insight about stuff.