Memeorandum is a black box

There’s no question that Gabe of has created a tremendous resource (there’s an interview with him at Don Dodge’s blog) but I must admit it baffles me sometimes. I considered not writing this post at all because it will probably sound like I’m just whining about not being on the top of with the A-listers, but I’ve followed the site for quite a while now, and the reason some posts rise or fall in the ranking of topics — and some stay longer while others disappear — eludes me. And it kind of bugs me a little bit. And no, I’m not writing this post just to try and get to the top by mentioning Gabe 🙂

I know that the algorithm behind the site is top secret, so there’s not much point in asking about it. But today is a good example of how mysterious the system is — I’ve been on many times, either linked to other posts or sometimes as a major topic. I was even at the top of the site briefly one day (although it was a weekend, so that might have increased my chances). But today I wrote a post about IE7, commenting on some of the criticisms and joining in the conversation, but that post never appeared anywhere on — nor did one that I wrote the day before about network neutrality.

Neither one appeared despite the fact that I wrote them around the same time as several other people whose posts were linked to or formed major topic headings, including Scott Karp of Publishing 2.0 and my friends Mark Evans and Rob Hyndman. Is there something I’m doing wrong, Gabe? WordPress pings technorati automatically, and a bunch of other sites. Is it that I’m linking too much to different people, or not linking enough? I have to know. Not that I care about that kind of thing, of course. It’s just bugging me. (Dave Taylor doesn’t like memeorandum because he says it adds “an amplifier to the echo chamber” of the blogosphere).


This post is now near the top of the section about Gabe, and showed up only a few minutes after I posted it, which actually makes me more confused instead of less.

Update 2:

Gabe emailed me and said that both of the posts I mentioned had actually been linked to on the site at different times, and sent me links to cached versions of the pages. I guess I must have missed when they were on the site and then they fell off the radar quickly and so I never saw them. The strange thing is, some posts (like the one above) show up right away, and the ones Gabe checked on didn’t show up for hours. Maybe I’m trying too hard to figure this whole thing out — I should probably just go read a book, or alphabetize my CDs or something useful 🙂

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