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For those people who have their own opinions about the course of SDN: I have started this blog series about my opinions with the part 1: About tagging the content by the users, you can read it here: Tiny details I would love to have on SDN, part 1. There is also the interesting thread in the Suggestions & Comments forum where few people have expressed their opinions about the features they would welcome to have on SDN, you can find it here: Suggestions for forum improvements . Especially one comment from this thread is very interesting and points the readers to this blog Idea Place launching at the Innovation campus during SAPPHIRE where Mr. Kuhan Milroy presents the idea of the Idea Place. This IP thing looks very promising for all the people who “like to give feedback, share ideas and influence SAP products and solutions”.

Content linkage through users’ history

My topic for today is how to connect the similar content together. Such feature could help people access the content which is close to their interests. From my point of view there is so much valuable content on SAP sites, but one has a problem to find the entire treasury hidden in there. Why? Because there are so many of the pages with the relevant content but the navigation is not always natural, straightforward and thus the content is not easy to find.

I remember an interesting programming contest like a year or two back, where some on-demand video provider had offered a price (some million or two or something like that) for a team or an individual who could create a program, that could guess which movies fit into ones taste (these movies are then being displayed for the user in the “you may like this one” section). They already had their own solution and the winner of the contest was the first guy/ team who was able to make the find like 20% more accurate. Of course after the deployment of the new algorithm the sales have become better and, I believe, the price proved its meaning.

The content is not that important for my point, you probably know some better examples of the suggested feature: like in your favorite e-shop (“people who bought X also bought Y”), online picture stores/ galleries (“people who watched these pictures also watched these”) etc.

I say such thing world be quite useful in the world of SAP. The content of the feature/ service is created automatically. Nobody is hired to fill the data into the service. Some user´s history data can be easily collected and are not big (like a table with two cols: “from” document and “to” document to understand the direction of the user´s navigation). And especially, what would be the most important reason, the SAP pages are quite complicated and I would bet a hundred bucks through such service some true “pearls” in SAP content would be revealed.

Of course there are the “development areas” and other types of grouping content, which help people to find what they´re looking for, but that does not create any link with “added value” to help people navigate between the most valuable data sources (single articles, documents, blogs etc.). Almost everybody got stuck with the search on SAP pages at least once and after somebody has helped he or she thought that it was a piece of cake to accomplish the target if you know all the relevant sources. This could be the way how can the SAP web team improve the efficiency and comfort of the “ordinary” people.

I wonder if somebody would use such feature. Please comment. Have a nice day everybody, regards Otto

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  1. Jason Lax
    Helping users navigate through thousands of pages isn’t a tiny detail 🙂

    Beyond the specific functionality you describe, SCN webpages all have a social bookmarking shortcut on the top right of the page (+Share) & also on this blog (bottom of blog: Add to: del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit) allowing users to share their experience  with others.

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    1. Otto Gold Post author
      Well, the header is not that serious. If that would be a tiny detail then I would not write a blog to discuss that, I would probably keep my mouth shut:))
      About that bottom of blog: I feel a little difference between share and connect. How can that help me find any other text on this topic or anything that one could call “related content”? Maybe it is due to my lack of experience, I have no idea about how that works and how can that help me. Probably… I am not the only one. Can you please elaborate how can one use the tool? Is there a blog or help to understand the features? I would love to point people to the blog to help them use the feature.
      By the way… I must register somewhere else to use it. And… I am not going to leave SDN without a good reason. I hope I can find a reason or two in any material you can provide about that… or… i will keep asking about my tiny details here, on SDN:))
      Thank you for your comment, looks like people can learn a lot through the blog comments.
      Wish you a nice day, Otto
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      1. Jason Lax
        Hi – I know it’s not the same as what catalog sites like Amazon offer where you can follow the path of other users as they navigated through the site. 

        One way to navigate through all SCN content is via the navigate in site search.  Just search for * and then notice all the options available on the left side.  After you select a content type (eg articles), you’ll have additional options to select a topic/product to browser through. 

        My last blogs describes this in terms of how our site meta tags are used: http://www.sdn.sap.com/irj/scn/weblogs?blog=/pub/wlg/18731

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