Our overarching goal is to make it easier for you to navigate the information landscape and be a well informed contributor to it.
One way to advance this large endeavour is this is to make sure we encounter better content while casually browsing.
If you’re like me, then you already know many great content creators and you may have a huge backlog of saved content.
By simply telling the platform that occupies your main habit for content discovery, about what you already know is great content - you’ve done a big step in making your future self smarter.
It is a simple yet significant realisation: That almost everyone of us has less than a handful of regular destinations to discover new content.
Some triggers for content discovery habits are external. For example you visit your email client for a specific purpose, or you search for something on Youtube, sometimes leading you down a rabbit whole.
Even more significant though, are internal triggers:
You feel a bit bored so you open - What?
For some people that’s a news magazine. For most it is a platform like Youtube or Twitter. Something that hopefully brings the gems of the internet to you.
Of all the potential destinations that you could visit, we found that every human has one that makes up the pareto-bulk - it very likely occupies more than 80%.
So, for a moment, deeply consider the significance that this destination - this app or website - has on your life.
When a majority of the information that finds you and the resulting explanations about the world around you, are dependent on one digital environment?
And on a bigger picture, how significant are the most widely used digital environments, for the evolution of our explanations and the systems we operate in and thus the well-being of our entire species? Given that the internet is basically funnelled through them as the dominant grazing grounds for our expansion of knowledge?
I use the term environment explicitly.
Because our moment to moment behaviour is largely shaped by the environment we find ourselves in.
Not to break your sense of being in the world, but we are not (always) as conscious, as our conscious perception (which happens retroactively with a half second delay) leads us to belief.
We make choices, comparing a limited number of things that we see in front of us or hold in our working memory. Your subconscious motivations weigh in on that decision. And then your conscious perception is presented with a narrative for that decision.
This is the fundamental reason, why psychologists and productivity gurus are so adamant about improving you environments to improve your future choices. Why interior designers or architects arrange cafeterias in a way that makes you more likely to forage the salad buffet instead of the desert section. Or the other way around, if profit has a priority.
If a hospital cafeteria can increase its sales of bottled water by 25.8% and decrease its sales of soda by 11.4% simply by adjusting their positioning - What does that say about the arrangement of your environments?
This is very good news.
If only we had more control over some digital environments, that are currently locked in.
Locked in to what the responsible executives, or the algorithms and experiments that guide them, deem beneficial.
When the goal is to keep users scrolling and consuming as much as possible to increase exposure to advertisements -> I’ve found that the UI is arranged in a way to increase your time on the home screen; on the feed that presents recommendations. Features that keep the users away from the home screen, useful as they may be, are often deleted or purposefully unrefined. Because they have a cost.
It doesn’t have to be like that.
As for the algorithmic recommendations themselves - I want to re-emphasise that we make our moment to moment decisions based on comparing the few options that we are able to hold in our limited attention. Or, expanding this limitation, the things that are laid out in front of us.
When you see a list of youtube videos in front of you. And one video has the potential to significantly improve a skill that is important to you. Let’s say your choice would fall to this video. But there’s also another video called „Buffalo discovers trampoline“. What do you click? (The buffalo video actually exists and it doesn’t promise on the enticing title.)
Not to say that heart-warming animal videos don’t deserve a place in your attention.
It’s less than ideal though, if they constantly overshadow videos that prove valuable over a longer time-frame.
Let me side-track once more, to tell you about the 25 ct cups of vanilla pudding I occasionally like to buy.
I once bought 3 additional brands of vanilla pudding to make a taste test for fun. My usual choice lost to a slightly more expensive brand.
But I still keep buying the original brand. For a few reasons. But mostly because I understand that it doesn’t even matter for my future pudding enjoyment, if one pudding tastes marginally better in direct comparison. It just won the taste test, because it’s sweeter. And my 0.25€ pudding is still delicious.
Does it really matter if tomorrows casual browsing session is more satisfying in terms of the amount of dopamine your brain releases? Compared to todays session?
It just matters for the media platform to keep you engaged longer.
What matters to you is to learn useful stuff and have a good time.
Sometimes one more that the other, depending on the mood, but overall, as long as it’s satisfying enough to keep the habit rolling, you’re good to go.
So this is where HubHub comes in.
You no longer need to rely on big platforms to dictate what’s on todays plate for your fine-tuned information diet.
You can still visit them, browse what they have to offer, save some of the good stuff for later…
But the main course is better served on your own platform.
You can create a Hub, as we call it, or multiple Hubs fore separate purposes.
And you tell it what you like and how you like it. It listens to the streams of content from your favourite creators and sources. And it lets you adjust your attention for each „Source“. Meaning that dude, that writes a mind-blowing essay once every blue moon is not drowned under a barrage of hourly news articles. That stuff get’s bundled, if it has a lower priority.
Anyway, this is more of a rant on some of the fundamental principles behind HubHub, rather than a pitch about its features.
On a very basic level, you can just think of HubHub as a place that lets you create your own feeds, mix and match them or explore them individually.
It really has to be experienced to convey it’s value and set you on a course
And whether you end up utilising HubHub or one of the competing solutions, that we will inspire - I sincerely hope, that you consider your information landscape as something you can shape. As something that matters greatly
Thank you for reading or listening.
Now I have earned myself a pudding.