Blogupdates Beta

The current view of Blogupdates isn't very good. At least it could be improved. So I tried to make it better.

Check out the beta version of Blogupdates.

These are the improvements:
- Hide stuff that's older than 1 month
- Dont use dynamic divs to show entries
- Show entires inline
- Keep all the cool features, like autoshow new entries since you last visited
- Support of blog brand image. For this to work you need the <image> stuff in your RSS feed. Check my Mozilla RSS v2.0 feed for example.

You like it or hate it? Please provide some feedback so I know what to change and what to keep.


February 24, 2004 01:32 PM | Posted in Mozilla

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12 Comments

I kind of like the new layout, although I think the page gets to big with all the actual entries shown. Maybe only show a few lines of the beginning of every blog entry.
The old layout isn't bad, I only sometimes have problems reading the dynamic stuff when I hoover over a line. And things like , sometimes don't work correctly.

Comment by b at February 24, 2004 02:46 PM | Permalink

I kind of like the new layout, although I think the page gets to big with all the actual entries shown. Maybe only show a few lines of the beginning of every blog entry.
The old layout isn't bad, I only sometimes have problems reading the dynamic stuff when I hoover over a line. And things like , sometimes don't work correctly.

Comment by b at February 24, 2004 02:48 PM | Permalink

I prefer the current blogupdates page. Problems I see in the new page:

1. you show entire inlines and some people push the whole contents of their postings in their feed (p.ex: Hixie or Hyatt)
2. because of that, the size of the page becomes enormous... More than 12 pages!!! I have to scroll a lot and I don't like it. I preferred the older way of getting the order of last modified blogs in a single glance
3. I liked to see the two last entries, that's very useful is more than one entries were posted during your absence
4. the last-modification date is less readable

Comment by Daniel Glazman at February 24, 2004 02:48 PM | Permalink

I don't like the beta version either, it's too long a page.

Site icon Comment by Pascal Chevrel at February 24, 2004 03:23 PM | Permalink

the new page is too long. is it possible to make a rss feed that would be all the blogs listed here, and recently updated ones would be at the top, while the oldest ones would be at the bottom?

Comment by mike at February 24, 2004 03:34 PM | Permalink

I'm using you Blogupdates every day - thank you! Your page is my most current source of all mozilla info!

When you switched to the current design, I thought that it was one of the best in the long while that I had seen. Now, since you've asked to comment on your new page design, I'll do that in a most constructive way that I can;) Here is my semi-professional opinion on the subject:

Firstly, as I said already, I like your current design. Though currently, popup divs can be cut off by vertical scrollbar which can be annoying; clarity of presentation and readability are substantially higher. I agree that older entries can be eliminated or moved to a different page, and blogs with connectivity problems should not be displayed.

Now, some thoughts about the new design:
- only info for one entry is displayed; IMHO, people who actively blog can easily write two entries per day. And if it's an interesting subject to me, I'd prefer to read originals with comments, etc. anyway.
- images of different sizes and colors distract from information and overrun some text (FF 0.8). Same is true for New image in the middle of a post
- vastly disparate size of entries make visitor read the page as one monolithic text with paragraphs, instead of letting one skim for specific info/author. I don't think people will have time to read the whole page every day
- the new background color distracts from text - white background increases readability
- Blogupdates is a summary of all blogs, so it would be better to present it as one - in a concise, multicolumn view
- with each blog getting more real estate on the page, page is getting longer. Normally, I'd be interested in the top 5-10 entries.

I hope I wasn't too long or harsh. I've been reading your Blogupdates for a while now, and I have seen that your designs only improve with time.
Good luck in your search.

Walter

Comment by Walter K at February 24, 2004 03:38 PM | Permalink

I definitely prefer the "at a glance" layout of the current version.

Comment by Colin Ramsay at February 24, 2004 04:32 PM | Permalink

I like the current use of dynamic divs to show excerpts because it keeps things compact. However, I can understand how the dynamic divs can be annoying to some people. Why not keep both? An "at a glance" layout and a "full posts/excerpts" layout.

Site icon Comment by Cheah Chu Yeow at February 24, 2004 05:01 PM | Permalink

I regularly use your blogupdates. I find it very handy. Thank you for this service.
I am personally only interested in the modification dates of the blogs: when are they modified the last time.
The rest I am not really interested in.
Divs that come to overlap other text when you hover over a part of a page I personnally find very annoying. And that's including the 'nice titles' script which I don't find as nice as many other people it seems :)

Comment by Martijn at February 25, 2004 12:20 AM | Permalink

Looks like there are some encoding problems with some of the entries displayed. In particular, some UTF-8 being displayed as Latin1 (in Daniel's entry). Given that the feed says it is in UTF-8, shouldn't you display it as UTF-8? (or convert it to the encoding of the page, at least).

Comment by James at February 25, 2004 07:11 AM | Permalink

By the way, you might want to look at using the "planet" aggregator code: http://planetplanet.org/. It is used at a number of sites already, and someone else would take care of maintaining it :)

Comment by James at February 25, 2004 03:13 PM | Permalink

Honestly, I like the beta format. I'm of the opinion that dynamic divs or alt text shouldn't contain more than a few words' worth of information. That said, the current format isn't too appealing to me. I can appreciate that it's more compact and easier to see who updated when, but I think the beta format is cleaner. I don't mind that I have to scroll more to see all the updates.

Also, a suggestion: I don't always know who a lot of these blog owners are, so it'd be nice to see their roles in the organization listed by their names.

Comment by steeef at February 26, 2004 01:09 AM | Permalink

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