ozmozr is out there

We (COSL) just spent the last three months putting together a piece of software called Ozmozr. I figured that since know one knows us and since we don’t market it would be a while before anyone found us.

I was wrong.

We have people signing up every hour or so now. That is nothing for a major web 2.0 site, but for a couple of farm boys from Idaho (now residing in Logan, UT) this is something.

The big question is what is Ozmozr? The answer is – hopefully – something new and not like software that is already available. If it was available already why build it.

Ozmozr attempts to complete the internet discover and share loop. How often do you find yourself telling friends/family about some new website that is just so funny/cool/outrageous etc. With Ozmozr you Ozmoze It (we have a bookmarklet you can get from the help page and there is a share button under most stories on the site) and in one step it is sent to groups or friends to be viewed at their leisure.

The interface is “very uneasy and noisy.” We are working on that. Unfortunately, because of time we had to cut some features and other important usability items were tossed left and right. I do apologize for that. However, we have been able to put out something which I hope is better than nothing and we plan on adding new features/fixing bugs on short schedules. If you find something or what to comment post it to a blog and then ozmoze the page into the Ozmozr group. I will read your ideas. At some point we’ll get better comment functionality up as well so you don’t have to post to a blog.

On to the list of Ozmozr’s main features/goals:

  1. Find people will the same interests as you.
    Many of us have blogs, use digg, flickr, last.fm etc. These services tell a lot about who we are and what we are interested in. Pump that data into a single location and you have a power mechanism via tags to find people that share your interests. Go to the user page. Then click on the tag filter tab. Not a lot there yet, but for example if you click on “Lego” you will find at least one geeky guy that likes Legos. That tag is based on things that I have Ozmozed and on tags that come in through my blog. This is still a bit buggy. We’ll get it fixed.
  1. Join groups and save your friends from needless IM and email spam.
    We all find something we just have to share. Do you friends a favor. Ozmozr instead of IMing it. When you Ozmoze a page it can go to a group or to friends and they can view it when they feel like it. At some point (soon I hope) we’ll let you send the page to your del.icio.us account when you Ozmoze it so you don’t have to do both.

  2. Tag based news filtering.
    We still are getting this to work, but at some point in the near future you will be able to add a feed to a group and specify that only posts tagged with certain tags make it into the group. This is to support my own problem. I post all kinds of stuff to my personal blog. I don’t want 90% of it say the Ruby on Rails group. So I subscribe the Ruby on Rails group to the Justinball.com blog and specify that only posts containing ruby make it to the group. Same with say a delicious or flickr feed.

  3. News aggregator. We can’t compete with the big news readers like bloglines and Google reader, but we do have a simple reader that lets you browse the feeds you have collected via the tags that those feeds are outputting. I don’t know that anyone else is doing that just yet.

  4. Microformats. Add your blog and then put something into a post that contains a date marked up with the hcalendar microformat. You’ll find that it shows up in your list of events. We also parse the html from any page that is ozmozed. Microformats are very cool. We will be adding an ical parser sometime soon as well. So, eventually you will be able to subscribe to your buddy’s blog. He makes a post and puts in an event. Ozmozr parses that. You then use your Google calendar to subscribe to the ical that Ozmozr outputs. Viola, the post your buddy made magically shows up on your Google calendar.

I’ll add more on monday, but for now hopefully these features help clarify a part of Ozmozr’s purpose.

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