I'm testing a piece of

by francine Hardaway on March 24, 2003

I’m testing a piece of software for a friend of mine. I do this often enough that I have another friend (the great Pat Borjon) as personal tech support, so when my system crashes from driver conflicts I have immediate help.

This won’t crash my system, because it’s a piece of web technology at a site called VUXO.com. Vuxo is actually a way to deliver content to web browsers. Corporations can use it for knowledge management and information sharing.

I, however, am using the “My Vuxo” variant, which allows me to rotate my home page among my favorites.

So What?

So a lot. When you go to the Vuxo site, it says “tired of the same old home page, day after day?” After almost ten years on the Internet, I am. Even if it’s the New York Times. And certain sites I’ve bookmarked yet never see. So Vuxo, a free browser enhancement that lets me change my home page without opening up the Internet Tools and making a permanent change, seems cool.

Vuxo intrigued me. When I signed up, I also had the option to let Vuxo rotate some of their favorites among my favorites. Admittedly, I haven’t lived with this for very long, but here’s what’s happened so far:

I opened by browser and was greeted by the site for “Hot or Not,” which I had never visited before. I had heard of it, but now I’ve experienced it.

I opened a new window and there was the Tech Oasis “Get Involved” page, which I hadn’t seen since it had been updated.

The next rotation was to worstcasescenarios.com, where I learned how to jump out of a building into a dumpster, start someone’s heart with a defibrillator, exit from a sinking car…you get the picture.

And then it changed back to www.lifeclinic.com, a site on which I used to record my blood pressure, weight, and pulse so I could see if there were trends.

Then it’s at housejewelry.com, a site I bookmarked so I could get fancy dimmer switches and cabinet knobs for my new home.

This morning, it’s at Calculink, a site that puts you in touch with all sorts of calculators for everything from body fat to mortgage rates.

I believe a tool like this could be at least entertaining, and perhaps even educational. The best learning (for me) always occurs accidentally, and the random nature of My Vuxo is right up my alley.

However, the corporate alternative is probably quite a bit more controlled, rotating among things your employer might think you needed to know, but might never seek out by yourself: details about the company benefits, for example, or sales figures from the worst region.

The corporate demo suggests you might bookmark all the site of your competitors, and thus be assured that you’d visit them regularly and see what’s happening in the competitive space. I really like that one.

Another suggestion is to use Vuxo to look at the sites of your customers, to know better what’s going on in their businesses.

And you can always do what I did: let Vuxo choose, so you have an appropriately randomized view of the outside world.

Reminder: A new edition of “The Outside World,” Stealthmode Partners’ monthly resource for entrepreneurs, will be published soon. This edition will feature an article on why business plans don’t get funded. Sign up at http://www.acteva.com/go/outsideworld.

Om Shanti, shanti, shanti om
(chant for peace)

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: