It was an odd thing, really. A couple of weeks ago, StumbleUpon released a feature that we didn’t know they didn’t have. We didn’t really want it, but we tried it because, well, trying things on social media sites is what we do.
After thorough testing, we give 2 thumbs up to the StumbleUpon Explore Box.
When I say that we “didn’t know they didn’t have” it, I mean that one of the editors and I both thought there was a way to Stumble through different subjects that weren’t part of categories. Call me dumb, but I assumed that it was a feature that I simply never explored. You see, I enjoy StumbleUpon as a blind discovery tool. I have my interests set properly and after hundreds of thousands of pages Stumbled, the recommendation engine knows me well.
For two weeks, I’ve done very little Stumbling with anything other than the Explore Box.
It has become a research tool better in many ways than even Google (not every way, but many). The pages presented when I Stumble “Infographic” or “Israel” are much more focused than when Stumbling normally. Regarding research and Google, I am able to find things that aren’t properly optimized or recent news – two things that Google dominates. I’m able to find interesting content that often has stood the test of time to remain relevant. When I come across something from 2009 that is no longer relevant, I help out the algorithm with a thumbs down. No offense intended, but old news is old news.
Here’s what it looks like with StumbleUpon doing the describing.