Wednesday, September 27, 2006

#19 Web 2.0 Tools - Start pages : "Pimped Out" Personalized Home Pages

It was very hard to just pick out "one" Web 2.0 Tool to talk about. I know that I didn't want to choose a tool similar to what we have already covered in the Learning 2.0 project so after looking at many types of resources I deceided that it would be best to look at start pages because it would be nice to have in one place all of these neat "things" we have been talking about. That way I can keep track of many more things that I could put in the sidebar of my blog. You could even create a separate library start page to help with reference questions or programming ideas if you wanted.

The three start page winners mentioned in the SEOmoz's Web 2.0 Awards grabbed my attention. I have been curious to know about what My Yahoo! alternatives were available. I was hard pressed to decide between the first two: Pageflakes.com and Google's Personalized Start Page.

Since I already have a Google account because of Blogger Beta I knew I had to try it out. Google's Content Directory is nicely separated out into category tabs for easy selection. It also lets you add your own modules or feeds. Nice. Although not as snazzy looking as Pageflakes, its ease of use was hard to beat.

Pageflakes has an AJAX start page which is more readable and easier on the eyes. It also has lots of feeds and "flakes" to populate your personal page with. It also organizes its content into categories but via drop down menus.

In both you could add your modules (pageflakes calls modules "flakes") or feeds and drag and drop them how ever you would like in you homepage layout. This is definately something that My Yahoo does not have. You can quicly add your own feed in both Pageflakes and the Google Start Page but Pageflakes doesn't have a way to let you add your own module yet. Google Start Page will let you add one via URL.

I probably use the Google Start Page for work related things and Pageflakes for personal stuff so that I can continue to monitor both for progress. I'm sure that at some point Pageflakes will let you add your own modules too. Overall start pages make a nice one stop shop for all of your personalized content.

2 Comments:

moonflowerdragon said...

Hi Christie, now that protopage v.3 has emerged the others just can't compare.

I did consider pageflakes, and had a google start page way back, but protopage's resizable, movable, overlappable stickies can't be beat.

Christie BW said...

Hi Moonflowerdragon,
I just checked out protopage v.3 (www.protopage.com) and I agree. The extra layer of customization can't be beat. The layers of tabs you can personalize and the ready made subject headers to give you ideas really make this site stand out. Thanks so much for bringing it to my attention. I'll certainly be delving deeper into it to check out all of its features.
Thanks!

 

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