Individual expression is the heart of FriendFeed, and today we're excited to launch FriendFeed themes, with six new designs to choose from.
One of the first things you learn conducting usability studies is that a participant will always say 'I don't like the colors'. Designing for a broad user base usually means finding the best middle ground you can, while still retaining the site's core personality. Through rigorous internal testing ("Looks good? Looks good!"), we've come up with several designs that let you add a little more individuality to FriendFeed's UI, making your experience better without distracting from the task at hand.
We started off with 'Fresh', a refresh of the original classic theme, and then jumped to some more interesting designs. These six new themes (and Classic) are just the start though. We've got more themes in the pipeline and will be releasing them a few at a time.
If you'd like to discuss themes and keep up with new themes as they come out, the FriendFeed Themes group is the place.
Now we know there are going to be two big questions out there and so we'll answer them straight away:
Can I choose how my profile or group page looks to other people? At the moment, selecting a theme will change how FriendFeed looks to you, and other people looking at your profile page will see it in whatever theme they've chosen. We know how important it is to be able to customize how your profile page or group page looks to the outside world, and while that isn't part of today's release, it's on the roadmap.
Can I make my own theme? This is also on the roadmap. It would be easy to just let you upload a background picture and pick a few colors, but we want to give you the flexibility to make more nuanced themes than this would allow, while still making sure that your theme will be compatible with enhancements that we'll make to FriendFeed down the line ("Looks good? Looks good!").
For today, we're happy to give the FriendFeed UI a breath of fresh air, and we hope you enjoy your new themes! Click in 'settings' to see your current theme, and try something new.