- July 1, 2011
Wouldn’t it be amazing to see those words in your Facebook News Feed, Twitter stream or Google Reader? To reach the holy grail of inbox zero with all the news stories and links coming in from all your social networks?
Keeping up with the folks you’re following on Twitter, your Facebook friends and all the blogs you read can be a daunting task (for some of us, an extremely daunting task). Summify, created by a team of two Romanian hackers/entrepreneurs, Mircea Paşoi and Cristian Strat, aims to ease the woe of information overload. Integrated with Infochimps’ TrstRank and StrongLinks APIs, Summify chooses the top stories from each of your social networks and sends them to you in a daily digest accessible via email, their website or your iPhone.
We interviewed Mircea, co-founder of Summify to get his take on finding the signal in the noise.
For our readers who aren’t familiar with your service, how would you describe Summify?
Summify makes daily summaries of your social news. If you only have time to read 5-10 stories each day, we do a really good job at picking them based on social data like retweets, likes, shares and Infochimps data.
What inspired this project?
The project started from a personal need – we’re very busy so it’s hard to keep up with all this information being shared on social networks, but at the same time we want to be on top of the news. We also figured there’s only a handful of stories that you really need to know to stay informed through out the day, so we focused on finding those really good stories.
You’ve had quite a history of interesting projects together (with Cristian) from building the biggest Romanian community of CompSci geeks to a job search engine for the Romanian job market – what drives you two to choose the projects that you do?
We’re really driven by two factors: if it’s a problem that we have and that nobody is really solving well and if there’s a big technical challenge where our skills can make a difference. We really want to make products that delight and amaze users, so it’s really important for us to be passionate about the problem and the solution.
How do you integrate Infochimps APIs with Summify?
We’re using both the Trstrank API and the Stronglinks APIs for ranking Twitter users. Trstrank helps us figure out globally how important a Twitter user is, and Stronglinks is used to make sure we pick stories from people with whom you have a strong connection. All of this data is mashed up in our ranking pipeline, together with a dozen other signals, to pick the best stories possible.
What have you loved about working with the Infochimps API?
First of all, it’s amazing that someone has put in the effort to build these APIs! It would have taken us a lot of engineering effort to create similar functionality, instead we can just focus on our core competency – ranking. The API has been really easy to integrate into our applications and it’s very stable and fast.
What words of inspiration do you have for aspiring hackers and coders out there?
Make sure you’re passionate about what you’re building, and everything else will follow!