Thursday, March 22, 2007

Trailfire trail of Carnival Citizen responses

Well here it is. It is a trail of the Carnival Citizen Carnival Blog on Church and State.
Its a neat tool and it has potential. I think it could partner very effectively with the Carnival Blog idea. It gives you a slide show of web sites and when the sites are tied together in content but not in actual web address, this tool can link them together. It is a step towards adding towards the meta level of the Internet, in which information is organized not just by how authors wrote it but by how users understand it. Its related to Diigo in that respect. If it were popular enough, you could use it as a database for searching, looking for websites connected to each other by trails. Shared text wouldn't be necessary for pages to be linked. They would be linked by human judgment.

However it does have quite a few problems. The interface for creating trails is pretty awful, I think. You add the plugin to your firefox browser and to make a trail, you push the button on the browser. A popup appears and a sidebar. The website at which you are adds itself automatically to the trail you select.

I look forward to seeing how it develops. Maybe authors could put buttons on their websites that link to all the trails the cite their page? There must be all kinds of functionality that could be added. But is the TrailFire architecture open enough to allow users to add new functionality?

(that is an interesting requirement, by the way. When else has it been an advantage for a product to provide its users the tools to reshape the product?

1 comment:

Bruce Mason said...

Nice to see Trailfire being used for something interesting. I'll have a go at following this next week. (Mind you I'm starting to need a feed for my brain right now.)