Sneak peek at edgeio!

I received an invite to take a sneak peek at edgeio this morning – edgeio is Michael Arrington of TechCrunch fame’s latest startup. The tagline for edgeio is “Listings from the edge” so the name comes from the word “edge” and “io” (input/output?).

The idea behind edgeio is that people can advertise items for sale from their website or blog and if they include the “Listing” tag with the post, the edgeio site will automatically find the post and List it on edgeio. Edgeio will therefore become a free version of Ebay (you won’t have to pay to be listed on edgeio, you simply post on your site including the “listing” tagin your post) where you maintain ownership of the data!

This is very similar in theory to the structured blogging concept Salim Ismail of PubSub talked about when I interviewed him here last December. I haven’t talked to michael about edgeio (yet) so I don’t know if edgeio will read and display structured blogging metadata.

I tried out a posting this morning on my WordPress.com blog (I don’t think posting for sale items on this site is appropriate to its content to date) and sure enough it showed up on edgeio – it took a few attempts to get it to show up but I think that was down more to my ineptitude than to any problem on the edgeio side!

You can claim your website/blog on the edgeio site so all future postings on your site are associated with your profile and you can link your profile to other services like LinkedIn, Flickr etc. You can also associate your profile with where you live in the world, which is handy obviously – esp when selling large/heavy items like I posted this morning.

Edgeio also have a sidebar you can add to your site, listing your posts on edgeio (and other people’s posts if you have very few) – edgeio say that this function:

can add useful content to your website and in the future can be the source of income.

Edgeio sidebar widget

As you can see below edgeio allow you to add tags to your listing and also metadata like price and status

Edgeio edit listing page

However, I couldn’t find the pricing or status info I added anywhere
Edgeio listing page

Overall, I think this is a fantastic idea (I have listed several items on Ebay and never sold any of them!). It needs a bit more work (I couldn’t find currency info for example) but this is still very early days for this application so I have no doubt it will only get better and better.

UPDATE:
I tried adding the sidebar widget to this site but it doesn’t appear to be functioning yet – what appears in the sidebar is the edgeio homepage! Also, I have just realised that the posting I put up on my site never received a trackback from edgeio – still it is listed in edgeio so I can’t complain.

FURTHER UPDATE:
I added the tags “Cork” and “Ireland” to my edgeio listing – anyone posting from Cork or Ireland should do likewise so we’ll be easily able to find each others items.

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23 thoughts on “Sneak peek at edgeio!”

  1. Tom,

    Thank you for trying out Edgeio! I’ve already forwarded this to the entire team to start looking at the errors/suggestions you point out. Thank you for taking the time to write about this.

    Perhaps you can start an edgeio network in Cork? Let me know if your stuff starts selling…

    Mike

  2. No problem michael – another issue I noticed on the site:

    I tried adding the sidebar widget to this site but it doesn’t appear to be functioning yet – what appears in the sidebar widget is the edgeio homepage instead if a listing!

  3. I tried claiming my blogger blog using both the in-comment and head meta tag methods, but neither has worked, quite yet. My blog is published via both RSS and ATOM and neither seem to work at the moment. I could be doing something stupid, of course, but tried to follow the FAQ best I could. Also, the FAQ is a little obscure in describing how to create a “listing” tag, in addition to other tags (cars, furniture, etc.) on blogs that don’t have the built-in category thing or explicit tag support. I hope Blogger gets with the program, but kind of doubt that it will since it’s a Google property and EDGEIO could clearly eat AdSense for lunch, and Base for dessert. Anyway, thanks for the Herculean effort that it certain took to get EDGEIO out there.

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  5. metavalent: its mentioned in my pingback above but its not that clear looking at it so I’ll type it out here..

    are you typing the url of your blog and NOT your rss/atom feed urls?

  6. metavalent – there was an issue for me entering an authorization code using ecto on Mac in WordPress – I got over that by using WP text editor. I’ve also put an email into edgeio support – not sure why that was the case. But it did work well once I’d overcome that hiccup.

  7. metavalent – I had problems also claiming my blog – I got it to work by inserting the code into my post (and deleting it once the blog was successfully claimed).

    One aspect of this which I tthink may be adding to the confusion is that edgeio seems to have some form of caching in place – you sometimes need to do a hard-refresh (shift-refresh) of pages to see an update.

  8. I got a sneak peak as well, and must agree. It’s pretty sweet. I’m not sure how often I’ll use it, but I really like the UI.

    I think they just need to make it a hair easier to enter a listing. Perhaps even create plugins for blogging systems will help.

    All in all, great site. I agree with your review.

  9. I really like the UI.

    I wonder. I think it’s quite possible that the winners in this space (eBay, Google, Craigslist) are better suited by unslick UIs.

  10. if they are collecting the listings via metadata then I wonder how they will tackle three problems:

    1. spam

    2. competitors like ebay and Technorati flipping a switch to create a similiar service based on the same metadata

    3. spam

  11. Tom,
    I handle the engineering side at Edgeio. A couple of comments: It’s actually not necessary to tag your posts with your location – when people register and claim their blogs and pick a location we’ll automatically set that as the location for listings from then on, and update any older listings that doesn’t have a location next time they ping. Just pushed out the update to do that this morning.

    Regarding the widget, that’s an artefact of our pre-launch password checks – people without our cookie won’t be able to see it. I guess we should look at taking the password protection off that specific page.

    Thanks for the thorough review, and if you need help with anything or have questions about the technical side of Edgeio , feel free to e-mail me.

    Vidar

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