Diigo Links

Wednesday, July 21, 2004

Furl

You'll notice that off to the left, under the archives link, there's a new collection of several links. These are a dynamically updated list of what I'm reading online. It's a service provided by furl.net (a company based in Amherst MA) .  I got the idea from Alexander (Sasha) Wait's blog. His "what I'm reading" page is a list provided by furl.net.   I was impressed by the depth of detail is "what I'm reading" page goes into. You can see his thoughts and clickpaths. You can see what he's reading (and therefore what he's thinking).  So I had a look into the furl thing.

The basic premise is, you create an account, you put a button on your browser, and whenever you're reading something that you think is cool, you click the button. The button puts a link to that page on your furl page. furl keeps a database of the pages you want to save.

How is this different to bookmarks or favorites? It lets you share them online (without having to email all your friends every time you see something you think is cool).  Please go to furl.net, create an account, get the Furl!! button (that's the express easy button that doesn't prompt you for any information - once you log in, go to the "My Settings" page and click on "tools" in the left column) .   I'm serious, do it. do it.

Then email me (and anyone else you think would be interested) with the link to your furl page. I'll follow what you're reading, or at least the bits that catch my eye.

You don't need a webpage. You don't need anything but a browser. Check it out.

WARNING: it's free.  it might not be free forever and you might get accustomed to having it around.  but that's the only downside I've seen so far.



1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Now that Furl is owned by LookSmart, I suggested this to M. Giles:

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If you release a "furlLite" to the public--so that a user could build
their own personal Furl if they become unhappy with your terms of service--it will go a long way to show that LookSmart respects the freedom of its users. LiveJournal, Wikipedia, Slashdot and many other sites have proved that this can be a successful business strategy; running a site for millions of users and running a site for a few dozen is a very different thing so there is very little practical dilution to your competitive advantage if you take this concrete step to "give back to the Open Source community".

... It would be more fair if you simply said that all public content posted on the site is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution Share-Alike license. See: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/ As it stands it's clear that you can "reproduce, modify, translate etc" my work but not clear that I can "reproduce, modify, translate etc" your modification, translation etc. of my work. Give everybody the same freedom and support the creative commons at the same time. This was the decision taken by Harvard Law School; see http://blogs.law.harvard.edu You could go even further and give people the right to license their public content under a more restrictive license-- FOR A FEE. I see no reason why you shouldn't make money if users want you to publicly host their stuff but restrict its public use.

Over-all I think there is an opportunity for a company like LookSmart to come across as being "more Free (as in Freedom)" than Google. The Free and Open Source Software community could be an important ally for your new parent company if they act wisely...

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Eventually I'll post it on my Blog but I'm a little busy with my PHD at the moment. If you are curious please sign up to my announce-list at:

* http://groups-beta.google.com/group/coreworld-announce

--ASW