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Make Amazon, Facebook and your other favorite services smarter

Make Amazon, Facebook and your other favorite services smarter
© Olivier Le Moal | Dreamstime.com

Modern technology puts so much information just a click or tap away that it can be overwhelming. If you aren't quite sure what you're after, you can spend hours browsing products, videos, results and posts on sites like Amazon, Netflix, Hulu, Google and Facebook and still end up with nothing useful.

That's why these sites have recommendation systems to suggest things you might like. It's a helpful way to save time, as long as the recommendations are actually things you want to see. Unfortunately, a lot of times the site doesn't know you as well as it thinks.

Maybe you looked at an item you would never actually buy just out of curiosity, or you started watching a movie that turned out to be terrible. Perhaps you were interested in a certain topic or person at a one time, but you aren't that interested now. Someone else might have been using your account, or you did something embarrassing you don't want showing up anywhere.

The good news is that sites that offer recommendations have ways to let you control what you see. In fact, a bit of time spent training, or re-training, a site in what you like can lead to more productive browsing and searching down the road.

Plus, it really doesn't take that long. So let's get started making your favorite sites work the way you want, from A to Z (well, actually "Y" for YouTube).

Next page: Let's start with "A" for Amazon
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