Sunday, March 1, 2009

Week 2 - Aggregators

To successfully complete No. - Aggregators you must...

READ this blog post.
DO and THINK about the information in the "Learn More About" activities.
LEARN by completing the Hands On Activities, including reading the Important Tips. Your total time commitment is about 45 minutes.

Introduction to Aggregators

There is an explosion of information and innovation swirling around you on the web. What can you do? Take a look at an aggregator. It can help you manage your digital lifestyle. How? An aggregator serves to provide web users with one, simple interface to the widely dispersed, frequently changing information landscape that surrounds them. Aggregators are not limited to RSS. There are hordes of them appearing on the web.

Social aggregators let you centralize and syndicate your online life. You can use an aggregator with your OpenID account so that all of your contact information is centralized and available for use on any new service that you join. You will save time and effort by eliminating the need to edit and update your profile information spread out over the web. I use a Friendfeed app in Facebook to keep up.

For your specialized interests, there are one page aggregators that look and feel like web portals. By using one, you can stay on top of all the latest news and developments.

For photography, try Mashfot. Users can find the latest news and popular links relating to photography and view the latest photographs from various photo sharing websites. View photos from Flickr and 23, news from Digg and Blogs, and links from Del.icious and Blinklist, etc...

I use originalsignal to track what's happening with gadgets. In truth, it is a huge aggregator for news and developments concerning the web, technology, entertainment, business and the world. You can customize its look and feel, grab RSS for all or just one "signal", share with other, post a gadget for signal on your site or view/use it on your portal device.

Try one of several media aggregators! The Internet TV Charts allows you to track the most popular online video clips each week from four leading Internet TV sites. All the best video clips, are on one page.

One of my favorite aggregators is Popurls. Popurls gives you the latest buzz about web sites, social sites and aggregating sites. Viewers get headlines from sites such as Digg,, Reddit, Newsvine, and TailRank as well as media from Flickr, Youtube, Odeo, iFilm, and more. If you are trying to find what’s new and buzzing on the web, Popurls is the place to look.

If you love the micro-blogging service Twitter, there are 12 aggregators and web trend sites that help you filter the Twittersphere. Imagine that! There is so little time to tweet. :) But, that is ok because you have at least 12 different ways to tweet smarter!

If you don't find an aggregator that suits your needs, then build one. SpeedyFeed allows you to import your favorite feeds and display them in a one page format like Popurls.

"Learn More About" Aggregators
1. Read this Wikipedia article, Aggregator (Time commitment 5 - 10 minutes). This is a new article so it changes often.
2. Read this article from Socialwebtools, Top 10 Top Social Aggregators and get a feel for how you might use one. (10 - 20 minutes)

Important Tips, Tricks
1. Anything that you share with an online community such as Facebook becomes property of the community. You have no future control over it. So, don't share it if you want it private now or at some point in the future.

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