posted on his blog that Findory, the personalized news service he created and has been running for the past 3 years, is to slowly "fade away". In other words, he's not going to put any more effort into developing it or the business. However findory.com will continue to be a live site throughout 2007.Greg Linden just
Findory is kind of like a personalized newspaper, in that the system learns your preferences over time and filters your RSS reading list accordingly. As it says in the Help section: "The more articles you click on, the more personalized Findory will look." It launched on January 2, 2004. I must admit the app never caught on with me, despite giving it a couple of tries. And looking at its Alexa chart, it seems that Findory never managed to get network effects going.
But I've always admired the concept of personalized news and Greg was right at the forefront of it with Findory. He's an ex-Amazon developer with a background in personalization systems - and his knowledge of the field showed through on his blog and whenever he left a comment on R/WW.
I have to wonder about the business model for personalized news sites, given Findory's demise. PubSub was another innovative company attempting personalization and they too fell by the wayside. However, there are business success stories - Reddit, topix.net and digg.com are three 'personalized news' services that have achieved network effects and are making money.
Read/WriteWeb profiled the personalized news sector back in October and we concluded that "personalized content will become a more popular paradigm in about 1 to 2 years, provided of course that the technical challenges can be overcome." So we think there's a good future in such services, but it's by no means a mature market yet.
In any case, thanks Greg Linden for all his hard work over the years on Findory and very best wishes for the future.