Microcontent Aggregators: Suprglu

In part 3 of my
look at mc aggregators [here are parts 1 and 2], I get stuck
into Suprglu. In this post I ask the question: how
sticky is this site? But enough puns, let’s get down to business. SuprGlu, a production
of New York design studio Iridesco, is another product that
enables users to collect their content from various services (flickr, delicious,
etc) and put it in one place.

Of the 3 such products I’ve profiled so far – 43Things, PeopleFeeds and Suprglu – the easiest one to use is Suprglu. The
step-by-step set-up process is user-friendly and includes a long list of possible content
sources: 

43 Things

All Consuming

Blogger

Clipmarks

del.icio.us

Digg

Flickr

Last.fm

LiveJournal

Simpy

Wordpress.com

If anything, it made me feel guilty for not having enough content sources! 🙂 It did
seem to take a while for Suprglu to fetch the feeds, but it was a relatively minor issue.
All in all, Suprglu has a nicely designed and helpful user interface.

Style a big plus

The other feature that stands out about Suprglu is the ability to not only choose from
a range of default page designs, but you can also customize your CSS and create your own
design. I haven’t had time to do that myself, but a good example is Emily Chang’s Suprglu page. So in effect, you
can create a brand new blog based on all of your content sources – and you can
style it just as you would a Movable Type or WordPress blog. I can see this becoming
increasingly appealing, as more and more content ‘buckets’ appear on the Web for users to
create content in. An aggregate blog to be a home for all that content would be very
handy. 

It also strikes me that commercial websites like Edgeio and Amazon
should be rapt with services like Suprglu and PeopleFeeds. Because it’s so easy to
aggregate using Suprglu, it encourages consumers to collect and ‘own’ the content they
input into edgeio or Amazon – and that theoretically encourages people to input content
into many places. Of course, that behoves commercial companies to offer RSS feeds for user-generated content (I know edgeio does, but not Amazon to my knowledge).

Suprglu is made out of open source technologies, including Ruby on Rails. Emily Chang
interviewed the
founders
back in December and got this neat quote from them about what it does:

“SuprGlu is about allowing people to pick up the bits and pieces of themselves
scattered around the web and being able to put it all together in the form of a digital
scrapbook.”

As far as my Suprglu page goes, I found the
tags to be useful but minimalist (nowhere near as impressive as PeopleFeeds). It also
only has one single RSS feed – for the whole page. No RSS feeds for tags/categories (that
I could see) and no filtering options. So both 43Things and PeopleFeeds offer much more
functionality in that respect. The main attraction to Suprglu is the ability to style
your page – and in effect use it as your main blog.

Personal Content Networks

Finally I want to highlight a
comment
that Dick Costolo from Feedburner
left on my previous post, about PeopleFeeds. Dick wrote:

“I love this concept. Let all the focused applications that are the best in their
domains be the content management systems for that kind of content and then provide a
framework for me to pull it all together. These kinds of Personal Content Networks will
be a bigger and bigger part of the landscape. Very cool.”

Personal Content Networks is a great term and neatly captures the value that services
like 43Things, PeopleFeeds and Suprglu offer for users. Every day on the Web a new
website turns up that wants “user-generated content” added to it – Flickr, delicious,
Amazon, eBay, Yahoo, Digg, blogs of course, social networks like MySpace and Facebook,
edgeio, Nooked, BBC – the list goes on. I have a feeling we’ll be needing more of these
personal Microcontent Aggregators before long.

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