Wednesday, January 12, 2011

An idea for a new web app...

I often have ideas for new web apps (though I'm thinking more about the iPad every day, I think I want one...) and I like to jot them down.  But I remembered I haven't updated this blog in awhile, so I thought I could store them here.

I've been pretty busy lately with Python programming in data management/financial models for Universal, Scheme/Racket programming for myself, and a whole bunch of maths.  I got this idea during a brief pause in my mathematical studies:

Essentially, its another Reddit/Hacker News app.  The key difference is that you pick the community to vote on things.  The problem I'm trying to solve is identification of key content from blogs and other alternative news sources. (The problem appeared to me in a comment on Hacker News, actually) RSS and other feeds don't do a good job if signalling important content the way the front page of a newspaper does.  Social bookmarking communities rely on the "wisdom of the crowd" which doesn't necessarily pick out the best content (E.g. the top item is some link-bait spam-post about 10 things smart people should work on, while an important article about changing political and economic climates goes unnoticed.)  This would solve that problem by giving "upvote" rights to people you select, e.g. friends you respect online and off.  It could pull links from Twitter feeds you choose, for instance, as well as RSS, or simply whatever your "editors" pull in.  Make sense?

Right, back to the maths...  Hopefully I'll get a chance to write about my adventures in Racket, Python, HTML5, and iPad apps soon!


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