Tracking Financial Info with FaveBot

Some of you know about, which I’ve been building since this summer. FaveBot is a software agent (robot) that continuously searches the web for “stuff” of interest to you. That stuff could be any of the following:

  • Local Events
  • Blog Posts
  • Books (New Releases)
  • DVDs (New Releases)
  • MP3s / CDs (New Releases)
  • News Articles
  • Photos
  • Podcasts
  • Online Videos

FaveBot can track those things for whatever topics you specify. So you could track your favorite sports teams, actors, musicians, hobbies, etc. But I wanted to show how you can use FaveBot to track stock market / finance related content. The advantage FaveBot has over, say, Yahoo Finance, is that it searches so many different media types. For example, there’s a lot of good financial content ‘buired’ in audio and video files that’s not picked up by Yahoo Finance. FaveBot will find that content for you if you choose to track podcasts and/or videos. Ditto for blogs.

To demonstrate FaveBot I set up a user, TraderMike, who’s based in New York. (the location is important for event tracking) There are two main areas of FaveBot. First is the user’s tracking list. That’s the list of topics (keywords) that the user has entered. Second is the “discoveries” list. That is the list of what FaveBot has found to match the user’s tracking list. You can choose to view all discoveries together or just the discoveries for one topic at a time.

Here’s a portion of the tracking list:

The tracking list is basically a control panel. Use the ‘New Tracking’ link to add a topic to be tracked. When you’re logged in you’ll see checkboxes next to each of your topics. You can turn those on & off from this page as well. You’ll also notice that there are numbers in parenthesis after each topic’s name. Clicking that number will take you to the discoveries for that topic. Likewise, clicking the Orange RSS button will give you the RSS feed for that topic.

Feel free to click over to FaveBot and see what it’s discovered for the 20 topics TraderMike is tracking. Here is TraderMike’s tracking list and here’s where you can see all of TraderMike’s discoveries across all his topics (equivalent to clicking the ‘discoveries’ tab when you’re logged in).

If you’d like to set up your own list, just go to the sign up page. Once you’ve got your list set you can have your discoveries sent to you via RSS (e.g. add them to your My Yahoo page) or via email. Please let me know if you have any questions and/or feedback.


  1. Posted by Richard A. on December 10, 2007 at 10:36 am

    Very cool.

  2. Posted by Michael on December 10, 2007 at 1:33 pm

    Thanks Richard

  3. Posted by Marc on December 10, 2007 at 2:43 pm

    Cool! FYI, I get an error whenever I create a new list btw. However…..I do like it.

    Make the media type icons in the discovery list much smaller, like 30×30.

    Make the excerpts contain much less text so that it is easier to read more headlines per browser height vs. scrolling.

    “New Releases” on the right should probably be more context aware. If I added “books” to my list then I should see new releases from amazon, and even old but 5 star releases. Currently its showing stuff that has nothing to do with the list.

    Keep up the good work.

  4. Posted by Michael on December 10, 2007 at 2:50 pm


    Thanks for the feedback and for trying it out. I’m working on those errors. One of the backend services I use has been flipping out for the last couple of hours. I’m working on hiding that stuff from the users. Hopefully I’ll get that in tonight.

    I’ll consider your first two suggestions when the site is gets a total redesign in the coming weeks.

    Making those new releases relevant to the user is also on my to-do list. Good eye. 🙂

  5. Posted by Craig on December 10, 2007 at 4:01 pm

    That rocks! I found a trading strategies event close to where I live on January 8th. I would have never known about that.



  6. Posted by Michael on December 10, 2007 at 4:04 pm

    Thanks Craig. Events are my favorite part of FaveBot. In fact, it was what inspired the site. I wanted something that could help me find many of the events I was missing. All the other media types just fell into place.