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30 September 2011

Delicious Redesign

As you know, Yahoo sold their social bookmarking service, Delicious, to AVOS, a while ago. On September 26, AVOS redesigned Delicious. It's sad how Facebook grabs the whole internet's attention with every redesign they make, while Delicious redesign was ignored like that. However since I am a Delicious fan myself, let me write my two cents here about their new design, which by the way is not only an interface redesign, but many functionalities have been changed too.

  • Avatar: Now you can add your own Avatar (profile picture) to your profile there. Silly!? Not really, I guess it's meant to make the service more social. Although Delicious was one of the pioneers in the Social Web movement, they have been a bit anti-social compared to newer services like twitter, espcially when Yahoo stopped any further development in the site for ages.
  • Stacks: Well, before talking about that feature, let me tell first you how I used to use Delicious earlier. Other than saving my bookmarks, Delicious was like my way to discover new startups, python libraries, news, etc. All that was done via two tabs that were normally ignored by many users, the Network tab and the Subscription one. The Network tab was like the timeline of my friends' bookmarks, or you can say it was the twitter-like face of Delicious. In the Subscriptions, you were to subscribe to some tags related to interesting topics to you, and it lists all the links saved under those tags whether by your friends or by strangers. Now those two tabs aren't there any more, and it seems that the Stacks feature is meant to replace them, it's like a way for people to curate links under a specific subject, give the whole curation a title and description. You know, it's like a less-geeky replacement for the old tags pages, which are still there by the way. Currently, you should curate the links within a stack manually, however I guess they will let us grab them from specific tags later on. Now if you ask me, are Stacks really a good replacement for Network/Subscriptions, well, I am getting older and don't get used to changes easily, but I guess after a while I'll get used to it as a replacement for the Subscriptions tag, however I'll still miss the Network unless it is - or both of them are - still there but hidden somewhere in the new interface and I am not able to find them!!
  • API: It's cool they left the API as it is for backward compatibility, as now I can still use the same bookmark button I have in my browser. Also, in case any developers had applications built using the old API, they should still function now. However I believe there should be additions to reflect the new features. Are the "tag bundles" mentioned in the API docs for example meant to reflect the Stacks? I have no idea.
  • Rough Edges: Some rough edges are there with the new design, but this isn't a big deal as they are minor one, and they made it clear that they are back to beta status and are looking for users feedback now. 
  • Auto-completing Tags: I've noticed that tags whether in the Bookmarklet or on the site itself ain't auto-completed. Is it something they are working on to improve, or is it a new trend! Hope it's the former not the later. The auto-completion of tags isn't just meant to make our life easier by typing less, but more important, it prevents us from creating too many with slightly different spellings in reference to the same thing, startup, startups, start-up, etc. 
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