This is a big one for us. So far, Clipmarks has relied solely on user-generated tags to power our search. But after a number of requests from our users, it finally sunk in, “why the heck aren’t we letting people do keyword searches based on the content inside of clips?” Talk about the easiest, most powerful way to keep track of the stuff you find online! Just clip things you find and have them automatically added to your own keyword searchable library. Each clipper is literally filtering the web to their liking and should have a search engine that lets them easily sort through it all. Brilliant! Well, today I am very excited to announce the introduction of ClipSearch!!
ClipSearch doesn’t only apply to each user’s library of clips. It also powers the search in the public library of clips on our site. So, anytime you want to find clips about something you’re interested in, you can find matching ones regardless of whether they have matching tags.
And in a tip-of-the-cap to StumbleUpon, we wanted to let visitors to the site jump around from topic to topic, without knowing what would come next. So we’ve introduced the “Surprise Me” button. The idea here is that you don’t always know what topic you’re interested in, but you’d like to explore until you find one. It’s just like turning on the tv and not knowing what you want to watch, but using the remote control to change the channel until you find something good.
In addition to ClipSearch and Surprise Me, we made a couple of other changes to the Clipmarks web site…
1) Live update: The list of results no longer updates in real time unless you want it to. We’ve started to worry lately that the list is moving a bit too quickly (accidentally clicking on the wrong clip title became a too familiar occurrence for us 🙂 ). But, if you want the live update on, just switch it on in the lower-left corner of the Clip List and check the “remember this” box in the window that opens.
2) 40 instead of 100: Each set of results now lists 40 clips instead of 100. The reason for this (aside from slightly less load on our server which will speed things up a bit) is that we just think 100 choices is too many to make. It’s like those chapters in a book that are so short and sweet you just feel good reading them. I would much rather read 5 chapters that are 6 pages each than one 30 page chapter. That’s kind of the thinking behind the change to showing 40 results at a time.
3) 3rd Line: Instead of showing who the latest user to pop a clip was, the third line of each clip in the list on the home page now displays the clipper’s original remarks. The main issue we’re addressing with this change is the desire to give greater attention to a clipper’s remarks, as we believe they play a big roll in defining a clip. Another reason for this change is some feedback we’ve received from users who said they often held back from popping clips that they thought deserved to be popped because they didn’t want to be perceived as taking over the home page clip-list. While we certainly hope people still use discretion when deciding what clips to pop, we don’t want to make anyone feel tentative about having their name show up too much. I have to admit, I’m very uncertain and nervous about this change. But, one of the beautiful things about developing something on the web is that you can always react quickly if you change your mind or make a mistake. So, we’ll be watching and listening closely to see what kind of impact this has.
I hope you like the changes we’re introducing today. FYI…if you need some tips on doing a ClipSearch, visit this page.