Tuesday, July 9, 2002

BlogChalking - Nice Idea, but needs work

Jumpstarting The Prairie Blogs Again
BlogChalking is an interesting twist on the WiFi phenomenon:

blogChalking is a movement attempting to create a region-sensible blog-search system – descentralized, improvised (influencing existing Internet search engines) and world-wide. Truly cool and simple.” [via Daypop Top 40]

[The Shifted Librarian]

I see a couple problems with this system:

  • Meta information like age needs to be tied to a birthdate, not to an age range. An age range will change with time ( like it or not, we all get older), while a birthday doesn’t change. If I really care about looking for bloggers in a certain age range, I don’t want to find people who were 26-30 two years ago (and could be 31-35 today).

  • Geography must be normalized, pulling from an authoritative resource on goegraphic info. Giving me a de-normalized text field to just punch in my own city name invites too much opportunity for error. And what’s up with “neighborhood”? Might be useful in Manhattan (Chelsea, Greenwich Village, etc.) but it’s useless in my town. This just reinforces the need for an authoritative resource for location-based info. Microsoft MapPoint’s .NET web service would be perfect here.

  • To be truly useful, this would need to incorporate meta data like interests. If I’m looking for other bloggers, I really don’t care about all of the “who should I date this week/what I ate last week/why all men/women/dogs/aliens are scum” blogs – but I would like to see professional, tech, KM, etc. blogs.

I don’t mean to nitpick – I think this is a good concept. But the implementation in this case is cute but not particularly useful.

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