The Internet’s perpetual motion machine

In my comment on Clay Shirky’s speech on the cognitive surplus, I mentioned the effect of increased content production on consumption patterns. I didn’t mention the Internet’s perpetual motion machine.

I was reminded of that when I reviewed the post and saw a new WordPress addition: the “Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)”. This section uses technology from Sphere (recently acquired by AOL) to recommend other items that the reader might be interested in.

The suggestions include posts from this blog (in bold), other WordPress blogs and items from across the Web.

It’s too soon to provide a definitive verdict, but some of the initial results I’ve seen have been impressive. I was thinking “media fragmentation” as I wrote that post, and sure enough, Sphere generated a link to my earlier post, Living in a fragmented media world.

TV, radio and other media have long run promos, but none have been as effective in driving consumption as Internet links. With TV and radio, it’s too easy to forget about the program that was promoed before it airs. Network Web sites do a terrible job of cross promoting, even when they’re simultaneously available on the site.

Creative Commons image from flickr user Brian Bennett.

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About Rakesh Agrawal

Rakesh Agrawal is CEO of redesign | mobile. Previously, he launched local and mobile products for Microsoft and AOL. His personal blog is at http://blog.agrawals.org and tweets at @rakeshlobster.
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