The Blog 500 Challenge (prize: $50,000 in advertising or $10,000 in cash) I suspect that to come up with a comparable solution to existing big wig aggregators (such as Technorati) a non-affiliated programmer would have to come up with some pretty innovative solutions to determine the top 500 AND keep it updated AND keep it spam free AND make Jason and Bryan happy, all at the same time.
Some trials and tribulations to remember:
- http://www.pubsub.com/linkranks.php – Failed in the first few weeks (or was it months) with large multi user blogs corrupting the results. Almost useless to determine an “A List” of 500 bloggers because sites like blogger.com dominate the linking war.
- http://technorati.com/pop/blogs/ – A list of “most linked in people” that is most widely used to determine popularity. Technorati actively filters out sites such as photomatt.net (which is twice as more linked in than Boing Boing) from its top 100. Technorati also maintains top 500, top 1000 and top 2000 and provides them to private parties on request. I might be wrong about this. I infer it because a certain graduate student had the “Technorati Top 2000″ list that I could never find online.
- http://www.truthlaidbear.com/TrafficRanking.php – The TLLB ecosystem is something that you have to be asked to be included. Mostly collects and displays the same kinds of information that Technorati shows. TLLB has come a long way but still leaves functions to be desired. The concentration is on traffic and not links. The scale tips in a different direction.
- http://blogshares.com – Blogshares keep track of the “price of each blog” and the “price of each incoming link” and thus considers the number of links very important. I have used this in many cases to judge how and what people link to from their blogs.
- http://www.blogebrity.com/thelist/ – I have no idea how and why Nick compiles this list, but they do and the “list” does not seem to change much at all.
- http://feedster.com/top100.php – Not just about blogs at all. Results are by subscription only through Feedster
- http://blo.gs/most-watched.php – Just top 20, only most watched through blo.gs and since blo.gs was recently acquired and they recently seem to go haywire once in a while…
I am sure that there are some other lists that I am not mentioning here but the point that I am trying to make is that an autogenerated list of top X blogs should not concentrate on any one factor such as traffic or the number of links coming into the blog. Total number of sites that link into a blog, total number of links pointing to a blog, (the next three can be difficult to determine remotely, reminds me of truefresco’s referer script) total traffic, the number of posts, the number of comments, the amount of online chatter etc could all be pointers of the elusive top X. I am really interested to see what people can come up with.