Sunday, November 27, 2011

B1llboard: old yet compelling hack

As Facebook likes to point out, the amount of data we share online is growing exponentially.

This of course means that there is plenty of opportunity to aggregate and present social data in value-added ways. Start-ups like ShoutFlow, Summify and Tripbirds hope to capitalize on this trend. But perhaps the simplest, most effective way to do this is to stack rank your friends' Facebook likes and present it back so you don't miss anything fun or worthwhile. Lev Steshenko of Campusfood and I indulged in this type of feature-plugging during the TechCrunch Disrupt Hackathon back in May.

We prototyped B1llboard, a service that aggregates your friends' top Facebook likes and sends you a personal, weekly billboard via email. The beauty of B1llboard is its lack of interface (a part from the "Sign up with Facebook" button to grant us permissions which prompted a friend to send me the following screenshot:)

B1llboard determines what the top music, TV shows, movies, video games etc. are in your social graph and sends you an email looking something like this: 

Please click on the albums/video games/TV shows etc. and buy them. We monetize via affiliate links (or rather would like to since setting up product links is still painful even if services like Viglink are trying to change that). 

The hack seems even more interesting now that Facebook opened up the app privacy floodgates and publishes all your activity to the ticker. Top apps based on usage and most popular check-ins would be great natural extensions - someone should continue this hack:)

Here's the 40sec live demo:

Personal favorites from Disrupt: (all somewhat artsy:)

& thanks to Michael Yap from the Design Guild for late night layout magic!