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Technorati Launch ‘Topics’

Technorati added a new feature today – Technorati Topics which they describe as:

“…our way for you to navigate the conversations on the Web, based on the categories you select. Let’s face it: there are a lot of blog posts out there, and sometimes you just want the latest and greatest within a general topic, without the search. Now you can visit one Technorati Topics page and see just that: live streams of the newest blog posts, all around the topic you want. Topics pages are constantly updating so they’re different every time you visit, and the posts you see scrolling down the page will keep you in-the-know about what’s popping right now.”

Users have the opportunity to view recent posts in the fields of entertainment, technology, politics, sports, business and life. On each page ‘recent’ posts scroll by – you can pause them by hovering your mouse over a post.

Technorati-Topics-1

I say ‘recent’ because I’m not sure how recent they are. I saw one ProBlogger post go through the business section that I’d written over 24 hours ago so I don’t think it’s a completely up to date thing.

How are blogs selected to appear? Technorati say that it’s based upon a variety of factors including ‘Technorati Authority, frequency of posting, use of relevant tags, links to related subject matter and general topicality’.

My first impression is that it’s a fun looking page but that I’m not likely to spend any more time there as it’s quite random and doesn’t really help me hone in on particular topics. For example as I sat watching the Business channel for a few minutes earlier I saw posts from such a large variety of blogs and topics (including some that I think would have been better in the ‘Technology’ and ‘Life’ sections.

The blog post announcing Topics hints at future developments of ‘Topics’ – so hopefully what we’re currently seeing will be developed to make it more useful. Perhaps a tool where you could specify actual keywords would be more useful – although I find their more traditional search feature to be a quick way to find good information.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Leon says:

    Nice new feature, even though I don’t think my blog will benefit from that feature because it has little authority. Why does Technorati only cater to the big blogs nowadays? In the old days, I’d actually get a couple hits a day from them. Now, nothing.

  2. Nice feature… I could see this getting a lot of use.

  3. Marko Novak says:

    Looks like digg.

  4. pelf says:

    If that’s the case, the higher your authority, the more chances you’d be featured, did I get it correctly? The way I see it, that’s basically another way of saying that only the A-listers get to share the cake =)

  5. Michal Levy says:

    I don’t see how I or my blog (http://www.israeldoula.com/blog.html) could benefit from this. I was hoping that they would make some more specific topics, but they kept it all very general. I guess I would fall under the category ‘life’. It’s a long way from going to life, to health, to pregnancy and birth. I’d still have to dig through hundreds and hundreds of blogs on their list to get something about my specific topic.

    And things that I write on my blog wouldn’t even get listed, even though there aren’t many blogs like mine, there are many other blogs in the general health section that have much higher authority than I do, so they get listed in stead.

  6. Jan says:

    it’s nice. :) but very like Digg although it has a little bit longer refresh rate :D

  7. I did spend 2 minutes to check it out.

    1. Posts from blogs with authority 5 were up there too. But the frequency of posts with low authority is less.

    2. The auto-scrolling is way too fast to make it worthwhile. You can’t even read the title before a new post is shown.

    3. I think we will be seeing a lot more bloggers tag their posts with the 6 technorati topics.

    4. My opinion, its a good idea with poor implementation. Its not worthwhile for readers because of the speed of new posts. And the quality of the posts look OK too. And its not worthwhile for the bloggers either – again because of the speed of new posts. Their posts will show up for all of 25 seconds!

  8. It’s kind of like sitting on the side of the road and watching cars go past.

    Another example of Technorati searching for a way to innovate and not quite coming up with something useful. Previous underwhelming changes have gone – the ticker, the WTF (where’s the fire) both seem to have gone. This might be useful if it had a much bigger hierarchy of topics or let you customise the topic that appeared on your Technorati homepage or sorted results by recent posts with high authority.

    Still no answer to the question – where does Technorati go from here?

  9. A Taylor says:

    Technorati is truly struggling at the moment and are trying tons of new ideas to see which ones get traction.

    I agree with earlier posters in that this feature is really not useful in its current format. Hopefully Technorati (in their struggle to stay relevant) will make frequent updates to this feature based on the feedback the Blogosphere is giving them.

  10. johno says:

    I like the concept, but I think that if it’s going to be of any real value, then there need to be more narrowly defined topics; or, perhaps user-defined topics. Could make an interesting screen-saver too, or a ticket-type widget.

  11. I looked through it but don’t see how it can be useful. You can’t drill down far enough in the topics, they’re too broad, and why would I want to spend time staring vacuously at a new blog post coming up every few seconds?

    If it’s supposed to help me get traffic, I fail to see how one will know when the right set of eyes (ones interested in my blog’s topic) will just happen to be sitting there staring when my post comes up.

  12. Simon Ward says:

    I hardly saw a blog with authority under 500 in the few minutes I scanned…so basically it’s just another medium that will help established blogs get more traffic.

  13. mon@rch says:

    I think this is great and plan on going to check it out. Although, looks like the many nature blogs get overlooked again. I assume they fall under the life section!

  14. We offer a similar service but rely on users to provide the content. Check it out and let us know what you think.

  15. Brad V. says:

    I share the same sentiment with many commenters before me. It seems like only the “top blogs” will be featured, so my own blogs (along with most other people’s blog) will have little chance of being featured. Honestly, it’s like just another type of Digg.

    I hardly get any traffic from Technorati as it is – maybe a few clicks a month at the very most. I get more search engine traffic than from Technorati.

    They should find a way to feature the “little guys” without a lot of authority. Low authority does not mean bad content!