Feature Article:

Product Review: Affiliate Mistakes Special Report
In his ebook "Affiliate Mistakes Special Report," Chuck McCullough teaches you how to spot and avoid or correct ten simple, yet costly errors that can seriously damage your efforts to promote affiliate programs successfully. Instead of writing...
...Read More

Overcoming Information Overload with Information Aggregators

Additional Reading

The Web continues to grow rapidly. Users find it difficult to know where to spend their browsing time. Web site owners find it difficult to attract visitors. Information aggregators help with these problems.

Information aggregators provide a summary view of what information is available and allow the user to go to the information source for the details. This saves users time and helps them not to miss information important to them. The summary modules often are all they want to know at a particular time. Web site owners can provide information modules that can be included on other Web sites, but they can also be displayed within an information aggregator. Providing useful summary content builds up good will and ultimately attracts more visitors to their site to see the details.

The fundamental building block of an information aggregator is a summary information module. This is the content that is organized and displayed by the information aggregator. The following are some types of modules:

  • RSS feed

  • Web page fragment

  • Web page extract

  • Vital signs

  • Directory entry

The module content must be served to information aggregators in some standard format that is commonly known by the content providers and that is supported by the information aggregators. Here are some common formats:

  • XML file

  • HTML fragment file

  • Commented HTML file

Typically these files will be accessed using a standard protocol such as HTTP.

The modules are displayed in the information aggregators in different ways by different tools. Here are some common layouts:

  • 2 panels

  • 3 panels

  • Single column in time order

  • Multiple column portal page

There are two main ways to get an information aggregator. One is as a desktop tool that you can download and run on your machine. The other is by logging on to a Web site.

Beyond the support for displaying content modules of different types in a useful layout, there are some other related features and approaches that could be included:

  • Personal Web directory and knowledge base

  • Capture tool

  • Editions for targeted user groups

The main types of information aggregators available include personal portals such as My Yahoo (http://my.yahoo.com) and My Way (http://my.myway.com) and various RSS readers (http://blogspace.com/rss/readers). The portals are typically restricted to the specific content modules that they provide and are oriented toward a generic audience. The RSS readers typically are just for reading RSS, but some are expanding out from this base.

The next generation of information aggregators will support a wider variety of information modules and narrowcasting to more specific information communities. For example, see Personal Watchkeeper (http://www.sugarloafsw.com).

Ron Tower is the President of Sugarloaf Software and is the developer of Personal Watchkeeper, an information aggregator supporting a variety of ways to summarize the Web.



More Reading:

10 Steps To Secure And Manage Your Passwords

6 Tips for Organizing Your Music Files

What is Shareware

Office Golf For Sys Admins Made Easy

Money Doubler Madness

How To Avoid Getting Hooked By Pfishing

Avoiding Stress During the Busy Holiday Shopping Season with eCardica com

How To Stop Spam

Beginners Guide to Music File Formats

Cut Out the B S in Your Internet Marketing

5 Easy Ways to Improve Your Website
When designing your website, remember to avoid useless and confusing features, however “cool” they may seem to be. Usually, keeping things simple and consistent are the best way to go. Here are five easy ways to improve your website and make...
...Read More

Dreams Come True With The Help Of Global Consciousness On The Internet
Dreams. There are two types of dreams: 1. When you are sleeping there are stories unfolding in your mind from a parallel dimension. 2. The aims one has in life. The latter is the type of dream I wish to discuss. We all have these dreams, don’t...
...Read More

Health and Medical Advice on the Internet: Use it Wisely to Overcome Illness and Find More Happiness in Your Life
I’ve got a bit of a problem with depression and anxiety. I’ve been tackling these problems for several years without the use of modern medicine. Tai Chi, meditation, martial arts (exercise), and positive interaction with other people...
...Read More

Microsoft CRM Development
Microsoft CRM is CRM answer from Microsoft Business Solutions. The whole conception behind CRM seems to be different. In case of traditional CRM software (Siebel, Oracle) - the application was designed with platform independence in mind....
...Read More

MSN PPC Advertising Network Finally Debuts
MSN PPC Advertising Network Finally Debuts MSN is launching its own PPC advertising program with new demographic and behavioral targeting features in France and Singapore in mid-late 2005. 2005-03-17 Joel Walsh MSN PPC...
...Read More