Finding a Personal Web Portal


Q. What is a good alternative home page for My Yahoo? I like the idea of organizing my news feeds and reading a sentence or two of each post at a glance, but the alternatives that I have seen are bulky, awkward and limited.

A. The personal portal — a private web page that can be customized with local weather, sports scores, stock tickers, news headlines and other information — gained popularity in the 1990s as a daily starting place for internet users. Sites like iGoogle (retired in 2013), Microsoft’s MSN and My Yahoo offered a similar experience for users looking for a familiar home base on the web every day, but if you find you are ready to move on from My Yahoo, several free portal-page services are available; some also offer paid services that include more features.

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Start.me is one of many options for personal portals.

Credit
The New York Times

Choosing a new personal home page typically involves first signing up for an account with the site. Once you do that, you continue with setting up the new page with your preferred apps and gadgets that display the news and other information you want to see every day. Many sites offer a clean, streamlined look for the information dashboard, and you can add your own touches.

Alternatives to My Yahoo include igHome. While designed to entice iGoogle alumni, the site offers an email preview gadget for Yahoo Mail. Users can also display headlines and summaries from popular news organizations, forecasts from the Weather Channel, AccuWeather and other sources, feeds from the ESPN sports network, and updates from social media networks.

Other options include NetVibes, Start.me and YourPort. You may want to tour each site you are considering to get a feel for the design and data feeds you can display before you make a decision. Once you select your preferred portal-page service, you can designate its URL as your browser’s home page in the settings.

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