StumbleUpon is a great add-on that embeds into your browser toolbar and allows you to surf through thousands of pages that have some significance to you. Toolbar versions exist for Firefox, Mozilla Application Suite and Internet Explorer.
StumbleUpon made headlines this week when TechCrunch reported that they were being shopped to the tune of $50 Million. One of the most significant parts of that story was the strength in numbers StumbleUpon has – CEO Garret Camp told Michael Arrington that the company has 1.5 million registered users and an average of 3.5 million page views per day. That’s more than Yahoo’s golden child del.icio.us for those keeping score at home ;)
Ok – let’s start:
At its heart, SU is a social networking tool that connects like-minded people. You can then share, rate and browse through the web while further refining your specific interests. It combines collaborative human opinions with machine learning of personal preferences to create virtual communities of like minded surfers. StumbleUpon uses knowledge of user preferences to deliver targeted advertising. For example, those signed up for photography will occasionally see an ad related to photography. This rarely interferes with the user experience and should be expected.
You start by checking off certain subjects from a list which is very specific, making it more powerful. Then as you Stumble! (find new sites) you can notify the tool that you like it or not by clicking on the appropriate thumbs up or down icon. If the finding is great, then you can share with your friends or post to the Stumble Buzz section of the site which stores recent Stumbles.
I find this tool to be most helpful in terms of finding inspiration and references for whats out there, because we all know that new cool (and not so cool) things are going up on the web every day (every second actually). Sometimes if I find something that a coworker or friend may find more useful than myself I will send it over to them and vice-versa. It is a beautiful thing when people start to connect in new and meaningful ways online.
Some recent Stumbles that caught my eye:
Guess the logo – You see these logos almost every day, right? – Let’s see how well you remember them. A fun game that times how long it takes you to pick the right logo. I am not sure of the benefit of this would be but it is interesting study nonetheless on how we perceive and retain various branding. Do certain people recall some logos more than others? Thanks to Tamar for sharing this with me.
Under water bubbles/Google Video – Sometimes you just find these beautifully weird things.
World War One Color Photos – World War I…. who would have thought there were original color photos of WWI? This site contains hundreds of photos taken by the French in the last two years of World War One.
Lets Be Friends – Touching photos of unusual animal friendships. If nothing else, this may make you smile. ;)
Time line of Art History / The Met – Great resource to further your knowledge or gain an understanding of art history.
Happy Stumbling! Share something with me patrickrosebud.