August 21st 2011

Stellar - Eduardo Morais' faves

I like Stellar. As Jason Kottke put it, it tracks your (and others’) favourite things online, by reading your ‘favourites’/’likes’/etc. from YouTube, Vimeo, Twitter and Flickr, and crossreferencing it with other users. It’s a cool way to discover neatness.

On the other hand Stellar makes Tumblr, which I described as “blogging for the lazy” upon discovering it, feel like a bureaucracy — even a ‘reblog’ requires at least two clicks and considering whether to add some comment. By contrast, your Stellar blog/stream/wall (there called the ‘flow’) is a product of your one-click ‘liking’ and favouriting around. ‘Creating’ is actually consuming and, at best, Stellar may cement the reputation of some users as good curators. Nowhere there’s that tiny Tumblr pretense of being a place where people do create original posts or at least original captions to other people’s stuff (95% of posts are probably n-th level ‘reblogs’, but still). Stellar is cleaner — only stuff you somehow declared to like, with no comments and no ‘via’ paths. I like it.

But considering the Web is shaped by the tools it offers, does Stellar’s architecture represent the level of engagement we desire? And should we even care?