I've developed a magazine based on my Delicious bookmarks. And a Twitter bot.


Last week was marked a great social achievement of mine – I managed to bookmark my 10.000th bookmark on Delicious. A lot of people have 10.000 tweets, but not many own 10.000 bookmarks, fully tagged and classified. I've been collecting these since December 2006 (probably one od my first 2.0 addictions), and they are becoming one of my greatest possessions – knowledge is the ultimate collection. Hopefully Delicious won't get shut down or left behind, so I will be able to continue with this obsession.

I've made a few interesting mashups with them already; as my most frequent actions online, my bookmarks represent the core of the chronolog. But things are changing fast and the desire for presenting information is moving into a new dimension. In case you didn't notice, tablets are mainstream, and the media industry already hopes they are the solution they've been waiting for. The Daily, which was released a few weeks ago, is the first no-print, tablet only magazine available (for iPad, Android version is coming), and other applications, based on social curation, such as Flipboard (which is amazing and inspired all of this) and OnSwipe are revolutionizing the way we (create and) consume content.

I find this evolution of displaying information fascinating and a bit ironic - going from newspaper form to blog form and back - but I've decided to play along, developing a magazine based on my bookmarks. Using the Html Agility Pack library for asp.net I managed to extract an image and a few paragraphs from each URL I bookmarked, using them to form a magazine. The number of tags I put on each link determines the initial weight, which is additionally modified with your views and likes, allowing it to constantly adapt its shape. Those links which are stronger, are displayed higher, have a bigger picture and more text which makes them more visible.

While contemplating about the potential of different APIs and all the pages I bookmarked these years, it occurred to me I could also make a Twitter bot. All the bookmarks I save are now getting automatically shortened with bit.ly and posted to Twitter, with a bit of artificial intelligence. The speed of posting is determined by the number of items waiting in the queue, adjusting to the frequency of my actions. It still has a few problems, but they are only appropriate for a prototype, whose posting algorithm still needs to be technically and mathematically improved.

The life cycle of my links I like has become quite a ride, as you can see in the diagram below, similar as the evolution of the Web, transformed by social, mobile and the upcoming domination of the tablets. And while the major players are able to spend millions on the development of new and creative solutions, small players such as myself can only play along. Luckily, I like to play.

The Path of a Bookmark

The path each one of my bookmarks makes in its lifetime.

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written 25.2.2011 8:34 CET on chronolog
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