A fun new YouTube-Twitter mashup called Forage, brought to you via Hunch co-founder Chris Dixon and the Hunch API, brings users a whole new way to discover content. The site, launched last week, delivers personalized YouTube playlists based upon who you are following on Twitter. Just enter your Twitter username, select a musical genre, and Forage delivers a playlist of 20 relevant YouTube music videos, based upon what your followers are sharing.
Janko Roettgers of GigaOM’s NewTeeVee spoke to Chris Dixon about the service. Dixon told him a little bit about how the service works, using preferences from existing Hunch users to predict recommendations for users that are not yet known to the system. “Basically we have about one million people who have Twitter (or) Facebook connected into Hunch and told us about their music preferences. We use this ‘known’ data to make inferences about unknown users based on who they follow, who follows them, and other signals.”
Not being one of the users who currently has their Twitter or Facebook connected to Hunch, I decided to try out Forage and see what kind of playlist it could dig up for me. I made a Rock Playlist that I enjoyed quite a bit, though it wasn’t so “Rockin’”, featuring Patty Griffin, Cowboy Junkies and Burt Bacharach’s ‘Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head’. That being said, it was surprisingly just what I was in the mood for, despite the fact that I wouldn’t necessarily classify most of the songs in the playlist as “Rock”. I also particularly enjoyed my Forage playlist of comedians, which featured all sorts of gems from Monty Python to Zach Galifianakis, Bill Murray, Stephen Colbert, Eddie Izzard, Ricky Gervais and, one of my favorites, Larry David.
Dixon told NewTeeVee, “Forage is really just a little hack I did. And I’m not a great programmer.” But it’s still a pretty cool way to find great playlists and discover new content. Give it a try and let us know how you like the playlists it creates for you!