20 thoughts on “Ex-Yahoo Exec now Pageflakes CEO”

  1. Wow, huge job downgrade if you ask me. It’s hard to respect a company that — despite trying to appeal to a tech-saavy crowd — can’t even get their code working in Safari after, what, over a year in existence? NetVibes supported Apple since day zero.

  2. I think the Ajax Start Page products are still way too tech savvy and not yet suitable for mainstream users like my parents. Although they check mail, read news, share photos, listen to music on the web everyday. But Pageflakes seems to have done a better job at making the product more mainstream compatible than Netvibes does. Also the ability to create shared pages for families are pretty slick too.

  3. @Vinodh: The difference is that back in the Octopus days there was no AJAX, no RSS, not thousands of APIs, less long-tail content. In other words, many of the services which these sites aggregate today didn’t exist at that time, plus the UI was not compelling.

    @Om: Pageflakes actually didn’t have such an early start. They started about half a year or so later than Netvibes. Seems like they did a pretty good job of catching up. In any case, I think Pageflakes clearly has the best product although Netvibes is nice too.

  4. I have to confess, the only reason I gave this article any attention is because when it showed up in my Google Reader I just couldn’t stop looking at the gorgeous blonde in the screenshot! Have mercy on me this early in the morning, please!

  5. @Scott: You may be right, but that points squarely at the short-sightedness of the approach PageFlakes took. Tariq knew that in order to get NetVibes in front of as many people as possible, he needed to appeal to the early adopters and zealots first. Those people helped do his bidding for him. And a lot of those people are Mac people. PageFlakes, on the other hand, doesn’t seem to care, nor do they care about knowingly borking RSS statistics for months on end. I’ve designed plenty of web sites and applications in my life, from my personal blog to the largest sports web site in the world, ESPN, and never once have I had any problems supporting all major browsers. It’s a question of belief rather than skill.

  6. Protopage is my start page of choice. Protopage allows collapsed windows to be opened with an efficient mouse over on the title bar, while the last time I tried Netvibes and Pageflakes they required clicks to toggle a window’s collapsed state.

    Actually, I think there is a large business opportunity…start pages are tremendous productivity tools.

    By combining tabs, RSS readers, widgets, and web clippings, I can’t imagine having to live without Protopage. It is much better than browser tabs alone, b/c my entire “desktop” is virtual and accessible from anywhere.

    I use my Protopage desktop far more than my Windows desktop…a true sign of the irrelevance of a desktop operating system nowadays.

    I believe start pages have a bright future ahead.

  7. FYI, less than 20% of my.yahoo.com users actually personalize the page. I highly doubt that these AJAX startpages will ever adopted by the mainstream public!.

  8. There are so many Yahoo’s that have left to become director, VP, SVP, or C level officers at other companies, it’s a might long list if you put it all together. I left Yahoo in 2006 to start a consulting practice, and while I love many people that I used to work with there, it seems at least 50% or more of the real talent I knew has moved on.

    I wish David well with PageFlakes – that data issue re: the inflation of their numbers (either intentional or not) probably got them a good amount of intention…as they say, any PR is good PR ๐Ÿ™‚

    Still, the model for these things isn’t there (imho) because it presupposes that you can’t get or don’t want a certain service as your start page.

  9. It’s way too early to declare a winner in this market. I bet most average users have never heard of neither Netvibes nor Pageflakes – yet. I think they both have a bright future. If you try Pageflakes and compare it with, say, Google’s homepage you’ll know what I mean!

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