Thursday, October 07, 2004

Personalization should not require effort

From Web 2.0, Dave Pell writes:
    Everyone seems to the think the holy grail of next generation of search is personalization. That may be true. But not proactive personalization. People will not work to improve their search, nor should they. Search is not that fun. It's not you're private files. And it's not the kind of thing you're going to spend hours ranking, rating and sharing. I would focus on search that personalizes without the user having to do anything. That's sounds too obvious to even post. Apparently, it's not.
Exactly! It should be obvious, but people make this mistake over and over again. Personalization is not supposed to require work from users. The interruptions from the paperclip in MS Office. The effort required to set up My Yahoo. All the checkboxes to set up Google's personalized search. It's not supposed to be this way.

Personalization should be about making my life easier. Help me do what I want. Help me focus on what's important. But, please, please, please, stay out of my way.

See also my earlier posts on the new My Yahoo, Google's view of personalization, and Google's personalized search demo.

No comments: