Thursday, January 12, 2006

Podcast recommendations

Matt Marshall posts about Loomia, a podcast aggregator.

Loomia has an unusual personalization feature, recommendations based on the podcasts you rate. From their About and FAQ pages:
Loomia provides search, recommendations, and personalization for podcasts and videocasts.

Rating podcast channels and items tells the recommendation system what you like and don't like. The more information that the system has, the better recommendations it can provide. Ratings also factor in whether a channel or an item is a top-rated one or not.
I'm not much of a fan of podcasts -- I find they take too much time to listen to -- but I did try it out.

Loomia easy to use and, impressively, is able to make reasonable recommendations even with just a few ratings. It seems like a useful way to discover interesting podcasts that might be difficult to find on your own.

In my experiments, however, the recommendations seemed a bit slow and seemed to tilt toward popular items and away from the tail. It is difficult to determine if these are a widespread problems.

Nevertheless, this looks like a promising effort to help people cut through the crap and surface good podcasts.

See also reviews of Loomia by Michael Arrington and Alex Williams.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

"I'm not much of a fan of podcasts -- I find they take too much time to listen to"

For me, the point of podcasts is to make use of the time when I can't look at a screen - if you're exercising, on your way to work or whatever, you can catch up on the news you've missed. It's really about filling in dead time with something more productive. I still think a lot of podcasters ramble too much, but that's another story.

As for Loomia, it looks cool. I saw it a few months back, but I didn't try it out. Time for a test drive, methinks!