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Can FeedHub Reduce RSS Overload?

October 11, 2007 | Web Tools

FeedHub LogoI’ll admit it, I’m a serial feed subscriber. I have a lot of interests that span a number of topics. The problem is that I rarely have the time to even attempt to keep up with and read all of this information.

Originally Google Reader was a Godsend as it allowed me to easily read and absorb information much faster than browsing the actually website. However, over time I’ve found more and more sites and subscribed to their feeds. And once again I’m finding it hard to keep up with all of the information.

FeedHub is a new service that I’m hoping will help ease the RSS Overload.

What is FeedHub?

FeedHub is a product from mSpoke that aims to mashup your RSS feeds into a single feed with only the most relevant posts. Simple put, FeedHub takes all of your feeds, analyzes them, trims the fat and gives you only what it thinks you really want to read.


How Does FeedHub Work?

Built on mSpoke’s patent pending “mPower Adaptive Personalization Engine”, FeedHub filters out the stuff you don’t want and delivers only the most relevant information.

FeedHub is a system that learns your preferences by monitoring which posts you read and which ones you ignore. There is also an option to provide negative feedback, by clicking on the links within your personalized feed to tell FeedHub “don’t show items like this” or to “drop this source.”

Theoretically the more you use it, the better it will become at knowing what you want to read.

Their words:

“Very simply, we learn about you based on the implicit usage of your personalized feed and any explicit gestures you choose to share with us. We use this information to distill a set of “memes” that describe your preferences. Each meme represents some characteristic of a post, like its topic, popularity in del.icio.us, or number of Diggs. Each meme also has a strength that indicates how predictive FeedHub expects it to be in choosing content you’ll like. As we learn about you, FeedHub automatically discovers new memes for you and strengthens or weakens memes appropriately.”

How To Use FeedHub?

To get started you will first need to export an OPML file (this is what your feed reader uses to keep track of your feeds) from your current feed reader and upload it to FeedHub. Once uploaded, it’s time to start creating your personalized feeds.

FeedHub - Create New Personalized Feed

To create a new personalized feed click on the “New Feed” button and select your options. Choose any or all of the feed sources that were included in the OPML file you uploaded and tell FeedHub how much content you want it to give you. Your options are to “Just include the most interesting stuff”, “Just exclude the least interesting stuff” or specify how many posts or the percentage of posts you want delivered.

Once you have your settings configured the way you want them, click the “Create My Feed!” button. FeedHub will then analyze this information and create a new personalized feed for you to subscribe to.

Unfortunately the results will not be immediately available. It most cases it seems to take around 24 hours before FeedHub starts delivering filtered content through your new personalized feed.

To further customize your preferences login to your account of FeedHub and sort your Memes. Clicking on the Memes tab gives you a screen like this:


By clicking and dragging memes you can easily update your preferences. For example if you want more items from a certain meme you can drag it to the “Yes, please!” area. Tired of reading about something or want less of it?, just drag that meme to “Usually”, “Sometimes” or get rid of it all together by dragging to “No thanks.”

Conclusion and Results

My results so far are somewhat mixed. On one hand FeedHub certainly weeds out a lot fluff, but on the other hand it also misses some articles I would like to read. Of course it’s a learning system, so the more customize and give feedback, the better it will probably be.

I’m not completely sold just yet, but will definitely give it some more time to prove it’s self.

One of the things I would like to see from a service like this is better integration into the feed reader. Rather than have to subscribe to yet another feed, it would be nice if the feeds I already subscribe to could some how be rated for relevance. This way all of the posts will still be there, but those with the most relevance would somehow rise to the top. Then after reading the most relevant posts I could then decide whether I wanted to read the less relevant or just mark them as read.

Do you suffer from RSS overload? Do you think FeedHub can reduce your RSS Overload?

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