Aggrega‘s concept is great: a Pandora for music videos (it also has a photos section that I haven’t tried). Unfortunately, while it’s home page looks inviting, and its playlist page is cleanly laid out, it’s “create channel” algorithm is sorely lacking. Pandora’s algorithm shines, being able to offer very relevant suggestions when you specify an artist name or song title. Aggrega’s not there yet.
For example, I entered two artists from the 1980s as “seeds”. (They were not obscure, but I can’t remember what I used.) Aggrega came back with a ginormous list in two very widely separated columns. It was painful trying to checkmark and scroll down, checkmark and scroll down. This is the first thing that has to be fixed, followed by better relevance. This morning, though, I tried “U2, Elvis Costello”, and it produced a list of about 4 artists, including U2 twice. Not sure what that’s about, and there were no recommendations for additional, similar artists. Except that one that I’d never heard of. Surely there are other artists to recommend. I can think of half a dozen British acts that match Costello’s “angry young man” years.
Yes, I know Aggrega’s in beta, and yes, I really think I could love Aggrega, but not just yet. For now, it’s just flirting with me, teasing me with what could be. For the time being, I can produce a more compact visual content using SplashCast and YouTube, building a complete music video channel in a single player, with auto-forward between videos.
However, if Yahoo and Microsoft are on acquistion sprees, to keep up with Google, here’s my suggestion. One of you pull out your wallet and buy both Aggrega and Pandora, then combine their functionality. Do that, and you’ll have one of the coolest applications online. If these video “channels” can be transferred to a portable video device, even better. And if you merge, like the Friday blogospheric buzz indicated, then you can’t lose. Right?
Originally posted on May 7, 2007 @ 1:42 pm