by Jonathan Singer, Mon Dec 01, 2008 at 11:37:53 AM EST
If you want to know what's happening in the world, then Memorandum will tell you - at least in a couple of areas. It's an automated news clipping service, known in the trade as a "news aggregator". It provides headlines and short texts updated every few minutes, with links to the original sites, much like Google News.
Memeorandum is based on the idea of "memes" or ideas that spread across the web (along with a pun on memorandum). Someone publishes an interesting story, other people find it, discuss it, and link to it. That's how the web works. Small stories come and go quickly, while big ones generate lots of comment and dominate the page for hours.
Google also follows links and assesses content, but Memeorandum is embarrassingly better than Google News. Google reckons that the more coverage a story gets, the more important it is. Unfortunately, broad coverage takes a long time to develop, so Google News can run hours or even a day behind Memeorandum. This is fine for casual consumers, but if you're a news junkie - or a journalist - it's hopeless.
There's seldom a day that goes by, whether a day or on the weekend, that I'm not on Memeorandum at least a dozen times. While I'm able to cycle through my normal slate of blogs and news sites in my favorites, catching a great deal if not the vast majority of the day's major stories, Memeorandum more than fills in the gaps, catching stories I otherwise wouldn't have a chance to see. Of course the way I found the article above... was through Memeorandum.
For more on Memeorandum, read Joe Gandelman. But for now, how are you getting your news these days (outside of MyDD, that is)? What sites aren't we reading that we should be reading?
Update [2008-12-1 16:51:9 by Jerome Armstrong]: Memeorandum has been the best-kept secret on the web. Here's the other like-minded sites I use:
Memeorandum.com (aggregates top stories on political blogs)
BlogPulse.com (tracks trends)
ShiftingTheDebate.com (tracks popular political videos)
BuzzTracker.com (tracking buzz on blogs)