A new design for FriendFeed at http://beta.friendfeed.com/

We’ve been spending a lot of time thinking about how to improve FriendFeed. And we’ve been tinkering with those ideas at http://beta.friendfeed.com.

Today, we’re opening up that site for you to try it for yourself.

It’s a pretty significant change for us, and we wanted to tell you a little about what’s new, and also, give you some insight into our thinking behind what’s changed.

We didn’t start out with the goal of a radical redesign. Our goal was simple. Make it more intuitive, more consistent, and ideally, more elegant. Here are some things that you'll find in the new site:

  • A consistent look for entries, no matter where they originated from, to help you focus on what your friends are sharing
  • A new and improved share box that can now post entries to multiple feeds
  • The ability to send and receive direct messages
  • Filters so you don’t miss a post from a certain friend or an entry about a specific topic
  • Keyboard shortcuts for the most common commands
  • And, one of the most defining features of our redesign — and what we believe will underlie everything about FriendFeed from now on: real-time. There’s no longer a need for refreshing — every view in FriendFeed now updates in real-time.

You can read a hundred reviews and look at a thousand screenshots, but for some things, only video will cut it. So here goes:

Once you see how cool the real-time updating is, see it on your own feed at http://beta.friendfeed.com. (You might also want to check out our tour or read our beta FAQ.) And of course, we’re still adding new features and ironing out bugs, so please let us know your thoughts and comments in the FriendFeed Beta feed and report your bugs here.

We want to get feedback from all of you before we flip the switch to make this redesign the primary FriendFeed interface. Our goal is to simplify the FriendFeed experience and put greater focus on the things that our users have found to be most valuable. We hope you’ll like it.

42 comments:

jtyost2 said...

I miss the ability to have a Firefox sidebar setup that just had my list of items scrolling past and nothing else along the side like this view: http://friendfeed.com/realtime?embed=1

flashmag said...

i don't like it! :(

littlefarbod said...

I don't like it, I prefer the old version, may you save the old version and we can use both?

آيدا said...

it`s to bad !
dose not friendly !

Ken Stewart said...

Overall this is very slick. There are somethings that I really miss like having the picture of my friends beside them in the subscriptions widget. Also, I would like some indicator as to where the content came from (e.g. FF, Twitter, etc.)

Other than this, I am going to love the DM option. That is something I've been missing for some time.

I'm anxious to continue to dig in, but think the FF team is on the right trail.

Niall Kennedy said...

Each new update request asks for up to 30 items, which is broken into likes, comments, and entries in the response. It's not immediately clear how changes in data are communicated back to the viewer, directing him to the 2 recently inserted likes. New entries added to the stream are easy to visually parse but comment and like insertions are currently challenging.

Chris said...

where can I get one of those friendfeed t-shirts? I would buy one in a snap!

Ana said...

FriendFeed tshirts here: http://www.cafepress.com/friendfeed

Robert Andrews said...

For one, I hope you add favicons for services.

yukichi said...

Not bad. But subscription feed is not necessary on main interface, I think.

yukichi said...

sorry,

> subscription feed

subscription list

LouCypher said...

We're doomed!

Mind Booster Noori said...

You're doing bad in the imaginary friends thingie if it is implemented like the FAQ says. You have to migrate them to a feed, or else when you migrate to the new version I'll loose the ability of modifying my imaginary friends and I am stuck with them forever.

Also, I still can't find a way to edit the lists in the new interface... I know it must be there, but it isn't, at least, obvious.

Nasser said...

I prefer the old version :(
May you keep both versions available?

نسخه قدیمی رو ترحیج میدم :(
نمیشه هر دو نسخه رو نگه دارید؟

drazraeltod said...

much to colorfull for my taste :-/

but then again im not the type using the main-page that much. Its only my fallback if the IM-Frontend is down again.

David Delgado said...

I don't like some missing things in the beta: source feed icons, imaginary friends (very useful), suggested friends, and the ability to filter feeds by service. I think all our sources should be shown when we look at our profile (now just a few and "more..."). I think the former design was way more useful.

Carlo said...

Ugly design

Eph Zero said...

So...the FF beta no longer groups similar items in the feed (e.g., an identical status that I've posted on both Twitter and Plurk)? Not so good. And no mini-window anymore? The filters are nice, but right-hand sidebars drive me nuts.

I do like the overall cleaner look, though.

Rama Vadakattu said...

i too prefer older design.Clean and neat.

Alexey Gopachenko said...

I don't like it
1) focus in now attracted to avatars and names
2) source is indicated by text only - too hard to scan
3) overall new look is too heavy - with this borders and colorful boxes

For me FF is stream of NEW INFORMATION and in general it's irrelevant WHO posted it.

Marinto said...

i'm pro new ui. it takes getting used to it, of course. but we're young and flexible, aren't we ;)

zecg said...

A very nice UI redesign overall, but I do hope you don't remove favicons for services, they are massively useful. Case in point, last.fm - it's not something I would hide, but when scanning a page for new entries I most often just skip them and leave them for later. The crimson favicon made this possible without a conscious effort.

zecg said...

Forget what I said about it being a nice redesign, I was apparently referring to the CSS color scheme before my brain kicked in.

Three things:

1. Favicons for services. They are essential.
2. Repeating users' avatars are really irritating.
3. Separating the entry title and link is WRONG. I click on the title. The title is the link. URL should be behind the title, doing its work when I click on the title.

Overall, after using it a bit, these three things really bother me. Just weeks after facebook, it seems friendfeed also wants to be Twitter. It makes me sad. Though I find some consolation in the API and the fact that someone will certainly deliver if you people mess it up. ;)

nixoid said...

Design is really ugly. I don't like twitter.

Just add real-time features to current version.

JZ said...

First impression: I miss drop down lists that display all the people in that list. I agree with a few others that the simple, white interface is cleaner and less distracting. I kind of like the user avatars next to entries. Thanks for sharing your work-in-progress, and thanks for giving me an alternative to Tw****r. The ff site is still the best ff client, which could never be said for other social media.

alf said...

Old design was elegant and laconic; this one is... well, awful. Paging disappeared. Way too colourful. Too much design, you know: it used to be a source of information, nothing was distracting reader from the text. Now, we have all the lines and boxes and stuff... all what I didn't care about, and won't ever care.

I know, it's a time for changes, but I don't like this change.

baton said...

do not like

Bleys said...

Rather cute. The subscription block isn't necessary on the main page

sean-ku said...

I don't like it.

Yuri said...

Hmm, looks like livejournal. No, I don't like it.

alf said...

Mea culpa: found the paging :) Still don't like the design, sorry :(

Ryan Snook said...

The top colored header text is buggy in Chrome, disappears and reappears when moused over.

Jay said...

I like it a lot.

Ryo said...

I like it so much.
A complete new kind of social interacting, and long awaited features.

At last some colors in the design.
Thanks so much!
Ryo

Rob said...

I prefer it too guys...

Great job and the best thing is all the feedback within friendfeed which you now have, we know you will take into account before rolling it out of beta.

Way more than can be said of places like twitter. ;o)

Rob

Bill Hooker said...

1. it's ugly and difficult to read

2. rooms made immediate and intuitive sense, now (as "users"? "imaginary friends"?) they don't

3. the service icons are useful data but the userpics are not

4. separating entry title and link is clumsy, ugly and absurd

5. imaginary friends was slick, now it's clumsy

Bill Hooker said...

6. the new mechanism for posting links, etc is pretty bad -- no drop-down for rooms, no option to post comments/links/images etc all at once

Bill Hooker said...

7. Is "reshare" gone? That was really useful.

Jac Falcon said...

I get tired of people who don't liek change. I think it looks way better. However, I agree, don't take out the old features. Source Icons are SUEPR IMPORTANT, as are imaginary friends, etc.

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deb {Markup Dude} said...

I LIKE THE BETA VERSION!!

For FriendFeed team, don't let idiots/oldies stop you. Keep adding new features to the beta.

Despite having self hosted Wordpress sites i have started using FriendFeed as my central & only location to be social with friends.

Reason? Your Firefox browser bookmarklet. I share a lots of pictures and videos, multimedia content in general, and the way the browser bookmarklet recognizes and creates a thumbnail for that is great.

Just give me an option to add a title to the text/content i am adding and i am all set with my life stream!!

Also may be there can be a small button, just below/besides Update field, clicking which reveals a more advanced editor for short posts [more than Twitter, less than full length blog posts]? It can be a complete lifestream then.

Prove TechCrunch wrong and Robert Scoble correct :)

patric said...

I get tired of people who don't liek change. I think it looks way better. However, I agree, don't take out the old features. Source Icons are SUEPR IMPORTANT, as are imaginary friends, etc.