Tuesday, July 3, 2007

The Friends Sliders, Part Deux

Right. Forgot a few things. Thank you for the reminders.
1) For a number of technical reasons you can only have 5 Friends sliders "open" at a time, plus your own. This is not the top 5. It could be any five. If you open more than 5, you can see them, but the site won't save this configuration, and will automatically close the lowest few to get back to 5. If you select five you want to keep open, no matter which they are, it will remember this. To be candid, i don't like this limitation: i have 17 Friends. But i tend to be keeping an eye on only a few and I guess i've gotten used to it. Also, I cannot escape the fact that only a small percentage of Friends users have more than 5 Friends. Anyway, we see this as a bug, but it only affects a few of us.

2) "New Notes" are absolutely not very new. In the first version we released we made some unfortunate compromises, and what it calls "new" are going back four months or so. It doesn't track what gets read, which is the problem. It's just a moving time window. This has been bothering us since we first released the new pages, and it is definitely on our bug list. My sincere apologies for this.

3) Alerts about "Replies" is an interesting idea, and we'll think about what it would mean. I can tell you that when someone replies to a note, even an old old note, it moves the entire "conversation" to the top of the pile, so you will still see the most current conversations at the top of Your Notebook. Thanks for the feedback.

The sliders were an experiment and i'd say the vote is still out whether or not they are a positive way to interact with Friends recent activity. (I'm not asking for your votes here -- we know many of you have never liked this presentation.) I like how visual they are, and they are really more dynamic than most elements on the Netflix site. But they don't replace other forms of presentation and, as I've said, we'll be revising this part of the site very much in the coming seasons.