I remember when I discovered Digg. I opened the website and was immediately thrown into a world of curated links, news stories, and articles that were focused on technology. It introduced me to a world of technology focused journalism that I spent a lot of my time not only reading, but learning.
Needless to say, Digg holds a special place in my heart. However, I too eventually realized that Digg was a stagnant mess of what it once was. The internet had grown up, and Digg was left behind. People were fed up with the terrible design, low signal to noise ratio, and the infamous Digg bar. There was a mass exodus away from Digg and into the new generation of online news curation.
When it was announced that Betaworks had acquired Digg, I thought that even if they shut it down, it would be for the best. There was no need for Digg to live on as the laughing stock of the internet. It deserved better, and much to my delight, it got it.
This week, Betaworks released Digg v1. The company has de-evolved into a startup and has been reworked from the ground up . Design, interaction, and curation have all been rethought and improved. Although there is a lot of work to do, the fact that a ten person team relaunched Digg in six weeks is an amazing accomplishment.
The best part about the new Digg is the design. Black text on a white background. Large headers and images from stories. Decent typography also improves readability. I like it. The best part: when you click on stories, it takes you to the source site instead of the Digg bar anointed preview site. That makes me so happy.
In fact, the only niggle I have is that you are forced to log in with Facebook, although the developers have said that a fix for this is coming.
There are some other features of the new Digg, such as popular and upcoming stories. While I don’t pay much attention to these, they are implemented in a good way.
With this reboot, Digg also released a new iPhone app. The app is clean, simple, and beautiful. There isn’t much to complain about there.
Overall, I like the new Digg. It is thousands of times better that it was six weeks ago. The fact that the developers relaunched a major internet brand in six weeks is enough to rave about.
I highly suggest that you check out the new Digg. Even if it doesn’t hold any lasting value for you, it is an important step in the history of a service that influenced the current generation of the internet.