Swurling, Tumbling, and Stumbling

There is a theme(me) emerging among the services that allow you to easily aggregate online services you use together. Swurl, Tumblr, StumbleUpon, they all evoke images of wild flailing and unbalance. How appropriate that they are reflections of our online attention.

I just signed up for a Swurl account and have been poking around the service to see what it can do. At first it seemed very much like Tumblr, which I have been using for a while now, but there are some notable differences. Swurl can only import certain types of feeds, as opposed to Tumblr which can handle just about anything. Swurl also has a commenting feature (titled Recent Conversations) that is really quite handy, and heaven knows I’ve often wished Tumblr had a native commenting feature. Swurl also creates a Timeline page for each user that visualizes their online activity. It’s nothing fancy, but interesting to look at and easy to scan. I’m not quite sure if it is a good thing to see the time I’ve spent online since 2005 in such a condensed format. In a way it is almost sad.

swurl timeline

Swurl is very new, so I’m curious to see what sort of features they will be adding. I’d be very glad for the ability to pull in my blog feeds and my shared items for Google Reader.