FriendFeed Changelog: see what code we are writing

At FriendFeed, we talk a lot about how to run our company with as much openness and participation from FriendFeed users as possible. Paul recently suggested that we could save ourselves a lot of time writing blog posts if we just sent out our changelists from Mercurial (our source code version control system). Why blog aout a feature when you can just check in the source code and keep on coding?

We will obviously keep posting to this blog, but we decided to take Paul's advice and publish our source code changelog in a blog at It is fairly terse (we prefer Python and JavaScript to English here at FriendFeed), but a few of you programmer-types may find it interesting, and you may notice some things that we haven't taken the time to announce.

FriendFeed is officially launching

We're extremely happy to announce that FriendFeed is officially launching! Now anyone can sign up for an account. We're also announcing today that we raised $5 million in Series A financing from two of our co-founders, Paul Buchheit and Sanjeev Singh, and Benchmark Capital. (For all the details, check out the press release.)

At FriendFeed, our goal is to make content on the Web more relevant and discoverable using a combination of social mechanisms and innovative technology. This is a big problem, and we're just getting started. We'll be continually improving FriendFeed for years to come as our technology, our user base, and the Web grow.

We've already learned a lot thanks to all the beta testers who have been sending us feedback since October. We can't express enough thanks to all of you for trying the product out when it was so new and rough around the edges — we wouldn't be anywhere without you.

If you haven't had the opportunity to try FriendFeed, give it a spin, and let us know what you think. We are eagerly looking forward to this next stage in FriendFeed's existence as we work with all of you to define what's next for our product and our company.

Buy schwag at the FriendFeed store

We've got some FriendFeed goodies at

The apron is my favorite :)

We've got tabs!

As most of you probably already noticed, we just added tabs to the top of FriendFeed:

Based on our usability studies, we think this will make it a lot easier to navigate around FriendFeed. For example, if you click a Google Reader icon in your FriendFeed to see all the Google Reader shared items from your friends, your tabs will look like this:

We made sure the tabs don't push down the content of your FriendFeed (in fact, your feed is now a few pixels higher than it was before). Our UI extraordinaire Kevin will do a blog post soon to talk more about the design thinking behind the tabs, but we wanted to get this new version out in front of you as early as possible to incorporate your feedback and suggestions.

Of course, it's always a little weird to see a new look on a page that we've become so familiar with, and it takes some getting used to. But we like this new direction a lot, and we're looking forward to hearing what you think!

First annual FriendFeed ski trip

Last weekend, we packed up shop and headed to South Lake Tahoe for our soon-to-be annual FriendFeed ski trip! Since it's still just the six of us, we decided to invite some friends and family along. Even our former intern Dan made a cameo appearance. We spent two days on the slopes (not entirely true... the girls went to the spa!) and two evenings just eating and hanging out. A whole evening was devoted to trying to understand the convoluted plot of Ocean's Thirteen. There was also some poker. Plus, the sunsets over the lake were beautiful.

We're hoping to have a larger bunch to bring up to Tahoe next year. If you're a talented engineer and want to join us (on this, and many other activities to come), check out our jobs page and email us your resume!

Small but useful: open links in a new window

One feature in the long list of oft-requested and Kevin-Fox-mandated UI improvements to come over the next week: you can now set a preference to open external links in a new window. This setting will make all shared links open in a new browser window so you won't navigate away from FriendFeed when you are checking out what your friends are sharing.

If you use Firefox and want these links to open in new tab instead of a separate window, you should update your Firefox preferences.

Personalized FriendFeed stats

We just launched a stats page that gives a fun overview of how you and your friends are using FriendFeed. Here are some of my stats:

We calculate the stats based on the last 30 days of activity on FriendFeed. "People you find interesting" are calculated by looking at the entries you have commented on and liked. Top sites are calculated by looking at where your shared stuff has come from over the past 30 days.

Check it out, and let us know what you think!

Moderate comments on your FriendFeed

We've just added a new feature to give you a little more control over the the comments that appear on your shared items. To moderate comments on your items, click the "Options" menu to find the "Moderate comments" link. A "delete" link will appear next to every comment in the entry.

Simple sharing directly from FriendFeed

A number of you have been clamoring for a simple way to post links and messages directly to FriendFeed without going to another web site. Now you can!

At the top of your FriendFeed, click "Share something," and you can share a message or a link without leaving the page. We also integrated all of our services into that box so you can share from FriendFeed and import the things your share on other sites in a unified way. (Importing is also a lot snappier — you will see your results on the page within a second or two without reloading.)

We also have a nice URL you can use to "Share on FriendFeed" directly from your blog or web site: For example, to share this blog post on FriendFeed, I would use the link

We added a badge to the bottom of the posts on this blog if you want an example. Our 16x16 favicon is useful for a sharing badge.

We plan on adding a lot of bells and whistles to this feature over the coming month, so please keep the feedback coming!

Hello and goodbye to Dan "the Intern" Hsiao

We have a great intern at FriendFeed. Too bad we never got around to introducing him on this blog, and now, today's his last day. Luckily, Dan Hsiao, our intern extraordinaire isn't bent out of shape over our procrastination. He's seen our organized chaos first-hand.

Dan is currently on winter break from his first year of business school at MIT Sloan (that is, until Monday). Before business school, Dan was a project manager on sales trading applications at JPMorgan in New York City. He got his bachelor's degree at UC Berkeley, where he majored in Electrical Engineering and Computer Science.

At FriendFeed, Dan worked on a number of UI-related projects and made some really significant contributions to product. These changes will be rolling out in the coming weeks and months, so Dan will have to be appreciated post-FriendFeedously. But in the meantime, here's a great little video tutorial that Dan put together on the FriendFeed bookmarklet. Dan was our first-ever intern, and all future interns will have big shoes (and jerseys) to fill. We'll miss you Dan!

Video: Sharing your discoveries with the FriendFeed bookmarklet

Many of you have already discovered the FriendFeed bookmarklet and started sharing the interesting and weird things you've found on the web. For those of you who haven't, our intern Dan made a great tutorial video: