The Reflector Network

About - For the Reader

The Reflector Network is a network of topically focused Social News websites, each highlighting the most current blog postings on their particular topic. By gathering content from hundreds of sources, a Reflector website does away with the inconvenience of scouring a multitude of RSS feeds and puts all the latest and greatest commentary from the community on a single page for easier viewing. With convenient introductory paragraphs from each source, readers can choose to simply browse the page for a 'quick fix' or dig deeper and investigate the blog postings themselves. The sources chosen by The Reflector have been carefully selected and edited to ensure every article included is relevant both to the community in question, and the subject at hand.

About - For the Author

Every article featured on a Reflector website is fully attributed to the originating source and author, with multiple links through to the original source and content. Our goal is to surface great content and great writers providing them with distribution to new and bigger audiences.

John Merrells,

What is this thing?

A topical aggregation of content from around the Internet organized in new and interesting ways.

What is it's purpose?

To promote the authors and publishers of the highest quality content for a particular topic.

Why's it called a Reflector?

Because it reflects the interests of a community back to the community.

Hey, you've stolen my content!

I'm sorry you feel that way, but let me explain. All the content on this site comes from RSS feeds published on the original source of the content. (Just like Google Reader). Only a snippet of the content is presented to the reader. (Just like Google Search). Only a thumbnail of a single image is displayed from the content. (Just like Google Images).

If you still don't want your content to appear on this site, then email me and I'll remove it.

My content is here, but no attribution!

All content is fully attributed to the author and publisher, with multiple links back to the original source. If an article is not fully attributed, it could be because the original RSS feed did not include that information. Or I have a bug in my software.

I'm happy to fix any accreditation problems or remove any content from this site. Just email me.

Why isn't my blog here?

Well, it might be, but none of it's articles have 'scored' highly enough to appear on any pages you've looked for. Search for some text from one of your posts and you might find it. Or, just email me and I'll add it.

Who decides which articles appear first?

Nobody. It's all automated. Well actually, everybody decides. The system uses many publicly available Internet wide data sources to discover which articles are most viewed, shared, commented upon, etc. Dear readers, it's like the machine is stalking you...

How does it find new content

A topical crawler is seeded with a list of hand picked archetypal sources, and from there it finds candidate sources with similar content. Those candidate sources are passed through a scoring function which determines if the source should be published or not. The articles are then read from the sources and passed through another scoring function to determine if they each should be published and if so where they appear on the results pages.

Why did you build this?

I've been thinking about information architecture for a while now, and I wanted to try out some ideas:

Who's responsible for this?

Me. John Merrells: blog, linkedin, email.