StumbleUpon allows you to set your personal preferences about they type of websites you are interested in viewing. You can install the StumbleUpon toolbar on your computer and have hours of fun just hitting the stumble button to return random web pages that match your preferences.
BUT! It’s about more than that! By liking, disliking and sharing your opinions on pages, the search engine gets to know you and returns even better results. You can also upload pages you come across to StumbleUpon for inclusion in its database.
Here’s the blurb from their website:
StumbleUpon helps you discover and share great websites. As you click Stumble!, we deliver high-quality pages matched to your personal preferences. These pages have been explicitly recommended by your friends or one of over 15 million other websurfers with interests similar to you. Rating these sites you like automatically shares them with like-minded people – and helps you discover great sites your friends recommend.
How Does it Work?
StumbleUpon uses / ratings to form collaborative opinions on website quality. When you stumble, you will only see pages that friends and like-minded stumblers have recommended. This helps you discover great content you probably wouldn’t find using a search engine.
Searching vs. Stumbling:
Using search engines to locate relevant content typically means hunting through pages of results. Rather than searching for quality web sites, StumbleUpon members are taken directly to web sites matching their personal interests and preferences.
Combats Information Overload:
Information on the Internet changes rapidly. StumbleUpon is a dynamic approach to keep on top of this ever-evolving pool of knowledge. StumbleUpon filters through the vast amount of information on the web to direct Stumblers to high quality web sites which are relevant to their personal interests. An obscure but interesting site can be immediately shared with other like-minded users. Old or low-quality sites can be removed if their ratings become too low. The participation of community members helps maintain a database of the most up-to-date and highest quality sites possible.
Using a combination of human opinions and machine learning to immediately deliver relevant content, StumbleUpon presents only web sites that have been suggested by other like-minded Stumblers. Each time the ‘Stumble’ button is clicked, the user is presented with a high quality web site based on the collective opinions of other like-minded web surfers.
Easy, Community-based surfing:
The StumbleUpon Toolbar is integrated with the user’s browser to allow for one-click access to quality web sites. A simple 2-level rating system gives users the opportunity to pass on or give their opinion on any webpage with a single click. These ratings also connect people sharing unique combinations of interests. Stumblers share their favorite web sites and interact with other users to further improve their web surfing experience.
A Personalized Browsing Tool:
StumbleUpon offers nearly 500 topics which users may choose to indicate their interests and preferences so each Stumble produces only the most relevant content. StumbleUpon delivers increasingly relevant content as the Toolbar learns what the user has liked in the past and continues to present quality web sites in the future.