Wednesday, September 10, 2008

FFholic brings "Best of Person X", Top Rooms/Photos/Music to FriendFeed

[Draft, Updated 8:26 am EDT] I just tried FFholic for the first time this morning at 2 am. So I was lucky enough to be using FFholic as they added some wonderful new features to help FriendFeed addicts navigate the mass of information sailing down their computer screens.

(1) "Best of Person X"
(2) Top Rooms
(3) Top Photos
(4) Top Music
(5) Filter by Language
(6) user at FriendFeed has statistics

(1) "Best of Person X" - Shows most liked/commented posts. Doesn't go back as far as it might, but it's an incredible way to look at people you've just discovered. Just click on any person icon.
Some FFholic "Best of" pages:
Robert Scoble 16,412 est. subscribers (#1) 3,318 subscriptions (#3)
Thomas Hawk 4,475 est. subscribers (#16) 4,484 subscriptions (#1)
Paul Buchheit 4,409 est. subscribers (#17) 248 subscriptions (#591)
Louis Gray 3,814 est. subscribers (#19) 379 subscriptions (#285)
Mona N 1,327 est. subscribers (#52) 627 subscriptions (#102)

(Problem 1A) # of subscribers is ~10-20% off - FFholic says I have "947 estimated subscribers, 837 public active subscribers" FriendFeed says 804 subscribers. I'm not sure how many of my subscribers are private. Robert Scoble says FFholic's subscriber count for him is in error by 2,000+.

Possible Reasons: FFholic says that it can't see private users, but my publicly active subscribers count of 837 is higher than my actual 804 subscriber count (which probably contains 20-50 private users). I also think that FFholic is using too high a ratio to get "estimated subscribers" because private users are probably less active than public users and subscribe to fewer people.

(Problem 1B) Most liked/commented posts is not finding everything. 10+ posts of mine have gone over 50 likes, and only 2 showed up on FFholic's page when I first viewed it.

Possible Reasons: FF API limits. FFholic may not be using the new reach which FF allows; i.e. Yuvi's "page 11 or item #0-399" limitation has been improved, and FF allows 1000 items to be viewed on selected pages (e.g. home page, public page). FFholic can also use "search by service" to dig deeper. I'

(2) Top Rooms - A feature we've been wanting for AGES! I discovered 6 new cool rooms in the top 30 that I didn't know about. I'm sure there are lots of other gems.
Check out Most Popular Rooms at FFholic!

Just discovered #10 کتاب خوانه Ketabkhane, #15 Firefox Extensions, #18 خنده Laugh, #20 Friendfeed上说中文 - Chinese at FF, #21 تازه های آی تی IT, #24 Answer Feed

(3) Top Photos
(4) Top Music
(5) Filter by Language
(6) user at FriendFeed has statistics

Friday, July 25, 2008

Top 30 FriendFeed Popularity (using Wired's Celebrity Meter)

JR Raphael wrote Estimate Your Level of Internet Fame at The Inquisitr today.

Wired released a Celebrity Meter (in beta) which rates your popularity based on Google's Social Graph API.

UPDATED: Fri 7/25/08 8:20 pm EDT to correct the Inquisitir author to JR Raphael. Also, added Kevin Rose at #4.

(Photo by unknown photographer)

Some people at FriendFeed (using only their FriendFeed page):
(1) Thomas Hawk 16,058
(2) Leo Laporte 14,126
(3) Veronica (Veronica Belmont) 12,956
(4) Kevin Rose 11,960
(5) Scott Beale 9,976
(6) Dave Winer 9,109
(7) Chris Pirillo 7,999
(8) mashable (Pete Cashmore) 7,285
(9) Steve Rubel 7,054
(10) Muhammad Saleem 6,829
(11) Fred Wilson 6,748
(12) J. Phil (Philip Glockner) 5,807
(13) Brian Solis 5,235
(14) Tamar Weinberg 5,126
(15) Robert Scoble 4,559
(16) Marshall Kirkpatrick 4,559
(17) Grant Bierman 4,507
(18) michael arrington 4,059
(19) Duncan Riley 3,968
(20) MG Siegler 3,869
(21) Jason Calacanis 3,840
(22) Ryne Nelson 3,592
(23) Allen Stern 3,314
(24) Russellreno (Russell Limprecht) 2,788
(25) Dobromir Hadzhiev 2,755
(26) Louis Gray 2,516
(27) mhmazidi (Hossein Mazidi) 2,502
(28) Morton Fox 2,198
(29) Paul Buchheit 2,165
(30) Chris Baskind 2,059
(31) Bret Taylor 2,034

Note #1: This is list in incomplete and was generated by hand.
Note #2: Loic Le Muir's page crashed the Celebrity Meter (which happened sometimes on other people too).

For comparison, our presidential candidates' MySpace pages
John McCain's MySpace page 4,613
Barack Obama's MySpace page 4,595
Hillary Clinton's MySpace page 4,226

Wired says: The Celebrity Meter scans URLs and scores internet fame based on:
- webpages linking to you
- your friends across social networks (just Twitter and MySpace for now)
- pages linking to your photos

(A) From Thomas Hawk's rating, it appears pages linking to photos are very important.

- Mitchell Tsai - CEO, Spiritual Business Companions : FriendFeed, LinkedIn, Facebook, Tribe.Net

Twitter Weirdness with my followers: Who are they adding & deleting?

Here's a Fri 7/25/08 5:37 am EDT update on the Twitter restore.

50 of my followers reappeared yesterday after the restore, but I looked into my e-mail folders to see if all of them had come back.

After June 4 7:00 pm, my "X is now following you on Twitter" e-mails showed 88 new followers. I had 169 followers + 88 new ones = 257 people. But Twitter only showed 223 people.

(Photo by manx_x at Flickr)

*** What happened to the missing 34 people? ***

So I sat down and went through the 1st 44 e-mails one by one. Here's the results:

9 accounts don't exist. Probable SPAMmers closed by Twitter. Thank you Twitter.

3 accounts are SPAMmers: (1) angelina1987 (2) flyupload (3) gerryu88. Again, Thanks Twitter

4 people are legitimate: (1) domanite (2) fotographic (3) marinij_opin (4) MarkDykeman. This is NOT good.

fotographic confirmed that he did not unfollow me.

~3.5% of my FriendFeed followers have unfollowed me, so I would expect ~1.5 unfollows out of 44.

Other weirdness (sync problems, API weirdness):
3 people who follow me DON'T show that link on Less Friends or Twitter Karma (1) evergreenceo (2) CityDance (3) ja_castillo

--- e.g. We're mutually-following, but LF/TK only show that I'm following them.

Summary: (A) Of the 16 missing people I identified, 75% were probable spammers and 25% legitimate. If the 25% legitimate ones don't come back, then Twitter's anti-SPAM algorithms are way too strong (and not catching all the spammers either...)
Summary: (B) There is a sync/API problem which makes Less Friends and Twitter Karma unreliable with 10% of my new followers.

Twitter Status says Thu 7/25/08 11 pm EDT "We have restored 99.6% of the following/followers that temporarily disappeared as a result of a database error. The remaining 0.4% are on their way back."

I don't believe Twitter, given their past history of poor behavior and blaming others.

As Chris Baskind says in Why Twitter Must Die, The problem lies in Twitter’s software code and infrastructure, which wasn’t written with the sort of loads in mind the service must now routinely manage... Nor has it prevented the company from blaming virtually everyone but themselves for their current state of affairs, shutting down basic services, and leaving key segments of its developer community out in the cold.

There has been a flurry of posts on the Twitter database loss and the new Anti-SPAM initiative problems. Some of my favorites:
(1) Louis Gray wrote Twitter Finding New and More Creative Ways to Fail Thu 7/24/08 at his Louis Gray blog.

My early attempts to understand this Twitter problem are in this FriendFeed micro-blog response to Louis' article.

(2) Aurelius Maximus wrote Twitter Just Pulled the Ace From Their Sleeve and Lit it on Fire Thu 7/24/08 at his Aurelius Maximus blog.

(3) Svetlana Gladkova wrote So You Thought Nothing Could Be Worse Than Fail Whale? Now Get Your Followers Back Thu 7/24/08 at her Profy blog.

(4) GeekMommy wrote I'm not a spammer, I've got a 1-to-1 ratio, Let me Follow People Back Please!!! Mon 7/22/08 at the Twitter Customer Support line.

(5) Jennifer Leggio wrote Twitter anti-spam efforts go overboard Mon 7/22/08 at the ZDNet blog.

(6) Sarah Perez theorized that the problems was initially an anti-SPAM-bot gone wild at New Twitter Anti-Spam Bot Causes Chaos on Thu 7/24/08 at the Read Write Web blog, but it turned out to be a database failure problem mixed on top of the anti-SPAM problems.

(7) Mark Davidson calls it The Great Twitter Follower Crash of 2008! Wed 7/23/08 at his Twitter Stars blog.

(8) Harrison Hoffman wrote The case of Twitter's missing followers Thu 7/24/08 at CNet News.

(9) Dan Kaplan wrote One day later, Twitter still fumbling footballs at the Super Bowl Thu 7/24/08 at Venture Beat and mentions the additonal problem of phantom Twitter posts which Louis Gray and Susan Beebe experienced.

(10) Susan Beebe wrote Twitter sending unauthorized tweets via my account! (Possible twitter data corruption issues?) [FriendFeed private feed - 7/24/08] This post won't be viewable unless you have access to her private feed at FriendFeed.

- Mitchell Tsai - CEO, Spiritual Business Companions : FriendFeed, LinkedIn, Facebook, Tribe.Net

Monday, June 30, 2008

Top FriendFeed Users (by number of pages on Google)

This list is a work-in-progress & not complete. It's a combination of the 30 people in the recent article Top 30 FriendFeed Users Based on Google Ranking [Lifestream Blog - 6/27/08] (FriendFeed comments) and some people I know are heavy users.

The original form of this article was a FriendFeed post (or micro-blog) (12 likes, 12+ comments) which is no longer appearing in my feed (probably due to too much editing of comments).

I was posting a few technical notes in my business blog, but stopped when I felt that was not appropriate, and I decided to start this "Technical Notes" blog for my ramblings.

Some discussions of the Lifstream article at FriendFeed using a "who:everyone&num =100" search - Louis Gray (29 likes, 36 comments) - Scott Beale (11 likes, 6 comments)

Mark Krynsky's comment at Disqus "...after paging through Google's results I thought it would be fun to put this together because (a) it contained many people that are great FriendFeed users yet not at the top of the digerati & (b) I was surprised to find myself appear in it. The measuring stick for popularity on Twitter is Twitterholic which is based on number of followers. FriendFeed has consciously decided not to expose this number for users of its service..."

Alexander Ebel extended this analysis to the German-speaking FriendFeed users. Alexander writes "I just restricted the Google search to language=german. So people listed can be from Germany, Austria, Switzerland... Friendfeed users who come from one of these countries but write in english couldn't make it on the list."

I felt that better analysis might be searching people's names on Google with "" to see how many entries appear.

The Lifestream list appears somewhat random using this method (1) Robert Scoble 66,600 (2) Louis Gray 20,000 ... (5) Chris Baskind 3,290 (6) Mr. News Junk 885 (7) MG Siegler 5,190 (8) Frederic 4,010 (9) Muhammad Saleem 2,320 (10) Scott Beale 29,100.

How does "Mr. News Junk" with 885 pages become #6?

Here's my hand-crafted list:

(1) Robert Scoble 66,600
(2) Michael Arrington 47,500
(3) Paul Buchheit 29,100
(3) Scott Beale 29,100
(5) Loic Le Muir 28,200
(6) Jason Calacanis 28,100
(7) Leo Laporte 27,600
(8) Steve Rubel 26,700
(9) mashable 25,600
(10) Fred Wilson 25,300
(11) Louis Gray 20,000
(12) Thomas Hawk 18,000
(13) edythe (Polly Roberts) 17,500
(14) Susan Beebe 12,700
(15) Mark Trapp 8,230
(16) Mitchell Tsai 7,970
(17) RAPatton (Robert Patton) 7,250
(18) J, Phil (Philip Glockner) 7,020
(19) Dobromir Hadzhiev 6,740
(20) Dave Winer 6,690
(21) Bret Taylor 6,180
(22) Maryam Ardakani 5,640
(23) mhmazidi (Hossein Mazidi) 5,560
(24) Steven Hodson 5,370
(25) Corvida 5,050

NOTE: Google page counts vary quite widely from day-to-day (so +/- 25% might not be unusual). Google also tailors searches based on your personal history, so everyone's searches are different. Also, people might be mentioned in the text (as opposed to using FriendFeed). These are Google searches for "personName".

Google pages (comments, likes)

(1) benedikt 3,130 (456, 516)
(2) Dieter Schwarz 2,710 (270, 279)
(3) marcel weiss 1,730 (200, 323)
(4) Timo Heuer 1,470 (251, 294)
(5) Fu_ 1,165 (174, 293)
(6) Klaus Eck 1,060
(7) Thomas Frütel 1,020
(8) Johannes Kleske 859
(9) Alexander Ebel 792
(10) cbgreenwood 700
(11) Marco Sascha Sven Hoppe 519
(12) Max Hartmann 511
(13) Ansgar Wollnik 481

(1) Hakan Dahlstrom 710 (59, 219)
(2) Rutger Blom 99 (32, 25)

NOTE: Google page counts vary quite widely from day-to-day (so +/- 25% might not be unusual). Google also tailors searches based on your personal history, so everyone's searches are different. Also, people might be mentioned in the text (as opposed to using FriendFeed). These are Google searches for "personName".

Jason Calacanis 28,100 - An example of why this analysis doesn't work. Jason's mentioned in a lot of pages, but he's barely started using FriendFeed. If we could somehow compare the (a) post count (b) comments & likes, that might be a better measure of activity. The ranking algorithm might take soe tinkering because people like Veronica might be feeding a lot into FriendFeed but not using FriendFeed very much.

- Mitchell Tsai - CEO, Spiritual Business Companions : FriendFeed, LinkedIn, Facebook, Tribe.Net