Veteran data center executive Jay Adelson has hit the big time as the founder of Digg, the latest Web sensation, which is drawing comparisons to Slashdot as its swarms of readers overwhelm featured web links. Adelson, who was a co-founder and long-time executive at Equinix, has recently been interviewed by Business Week and Forbes about Digg's phenomenal success. At the end of October Digg received $2.8 million in funding from a group that included eBay founder Perre Omidyar and Netscape pioneer Marc Andreessen.
So what is Digg all about? It's an addictive site, and a great place to find the latest tech news. Bloggers and tech publications have found that it's an important traffic source, and are submitting their stories in hopes of boosting readership and ad displays. Business Week summarizes the process:
Every day its members send in around 700 ideas of things they find interesting. Each is put in an online queue where registered members can vote for their favorites. The 15 stories that garner the most votes, or diggs, are automatically published on the front page of the digg site. The next most popular stories follow on subsequent pages. Some 500,000 visitors read the site every day, a figure growing by 100,000 per month.
Many fast-growing web ventures hit a point where their success outstrips their infrastructure (TypePad is an obvious example). But in Adelson, Digg has a leader with an extraordinary understanding of peering and data centers, and how to scale a high-traffic operation. Look for continued growth for Digg.