What has ex-Yahooer and Delicious founder Joshua Schachter been working on since leaving Yahoo last June? At least one project is a GreaseMonkey script that shows readers the political leanings of blogs and news sites on Memeorandum, a news aggregator.
Political sites are usually very biased, but the casual reader often doesn’t know which way a particular site tends to rant. With the new script, also available as a Firefox plugin, sites are shaded towards blue (whiny cowards) or red (warmongers) depending on their linking behavior.
The colors don’t necessarily represent each blogger’s personal views or biases. It’s a reflection of their linking activity. The algorithm looks at the stories that blogger’s linked to before, relative to all other bloggers, and groups them accordingly. People that link to things that only conservatives find interesting will be classified as bright red, even if they are personally moderate or liberal, and vice-versa. The algorithm can’t read minds, so don’t be offended if you feel misrepresented. It’s only looking at the data.
Microsoft has been testing a similar product, based on different technology, called Blews.