Scoble: Your link blog’s interface is brutal

December 17th, 2004 at 11:29 pm

I’ve had Scoble‘s “Link Blog” as a “live bookmark” in Firefox for a while now because it’s pretty good for those random moments where your main sources of news/entertainment are all tapped out and you’re looking for something interesting to read.

However, since coming back from the recent bandwidth issues the site has become really painfull to use. With the old theme the feed used to link to a named-anchor (<a name=”blah”>) on the page for that particular item. The new system merely points you to the top of the monthly archive page. The problem with this behavior is that the monthly archive pages become gargantuan (thanks largely to Scobles return to full-text posting); we’re only about 1/2 way through december, and the december archive is already at 559.76 KB spread over more than 100 vertical-scroll-pages. On top of all this, the theme (specifically for the archive page) is nearly unreadable, with no horizontal width defined, and no visual distinction from the end of one post to the start of another. I thought for a second that it was maybe a case of me using Firefox on an IE-only-coded site, but the site looks just as terrible in IE.

To summarize, there are three things which really need to be addressed:

  1. At least fix the urls in the feeds so they at least a named anchor (<a name=”blah”>) for that item on the page, or at best point to a individual permanent-link for each item
  2. Break down the monthly archiving format into something else thats more manageable for people using Live-bookmark typed (read: Header viewing only) interfaces
  3. Add some visual style to the pages that make reading them actually possible

Alternatively (or additionally), make the primary feed, or provide another feed, that merely links directly to the targetted article. It seems odd to me that the feed url is going to a page with a full-text copy of something that already exists elsewhere on the web in a full-text state, especially then the intermediary is suffering from bandwidth issues.

Now, don’t get me wrong, I really like the service the link blog provides, I just want my experience with it to be better.