It's even worse than it appears..
Wednesday June 22, 2022; 11:46 AM EDT
  • Have you noticed how some feeds look great in a mailbox-style reader while others don't. For example, feeds from Substack are good in mailbox readers because their items are full-text titled essays. But NYT feeds look terrible in mailbox readers, as does Scripting News. #
  • The mailbox reader, which was popularized by Google Reader, is designed for titled full-text feeds. The NYT has titles on its feed items, but not full text, just a synopsis. There's so much wasted space in the display. It feels unbalanced. I like whitespace, but that's not what this is. #
  • The incredibly useful Hacker News feed looks pretty weird in a mailbox-style reader. #
  • In my feed, and feeds of Drummer blogs, some posts have titles, but most don't. A mailbox reader can't deal with untitled posts, I've given up on trying to make it work, it just doesn't.#
  • The NYT and Scripting work much better in a river-style display, which is the pattern that Twitter and Facebook use, as examples. #
  • The bottom line: We have to move away from mailbox-only feed readers. Mailboxes are great when the items are like email messages. But that's far from all there is. We have to try out new ideas, lots of them. And to do that I'm making it easier to try new ideas out. 💥#

Last update: Wednesday June 22, 2022; 9:21 PM EDT.

You know those obnoxious sites that pop up dialogs when they think you're about to leave, asking you to subscribe to their email newsletter? Well that won't do for Scripting News readers who are a discerning lot, very loyal, but that wouldn't last long if I did rude stuff like that. So here I am at the bottom of the page quietly encouraging you to sign up for the nightly email. It's got everything from the previous day on Scripting, plus the contents of the linkblog and who knows what else we'll get in there. People really love it. I wish I had done it sooner. And every email has an unsub link so if you want to get out, you can, easily -- no questions asked, and no follow-ups. Go ahead and do it, you won't be sorry! :-)