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The Death of the Blogroll


I come not to praise the blogroll, but to bury it. The problem with the blogroll is that it is too static. I have no idea if half those links are alive or dead. I have no clue when the last post was for a given blog, although some blogrolls give a kind of visual cue to suggest that it was recently updated.

Seen Netvibes? Pageflakes? These allow you to create a page full of RSS feeds. So what if the blogroll was replaced by a page entitled, "What I'm Reading," and it showed the blogs that would have been listed on a blogroll, but instead showed the most recent post from all the blogs that I do read?

Andy Brudtkuhl did something like this when he created Central Iowa Bloggers' News River page. This page takes the most recent posts of a bunch of us Iowa bloggers and streams them together.

Now combine the two concepts and I think that's a much better presentation of the soon-to-be-dead blogroll.

This replacement should appear almost like contacts in a contact list. Picture, name, blog link, description of the blog, perhaps a statement on why I read it regularly, and then the blog's most recent post. Then when people see my blogroll, they get a much better understanding of why I browse the blogs that I do.

And of course, at the end of it all, a link to the OPML feed so that they can import it into their news reader. But better if I can checkmark those that interest me and then create a dynamic OPML file for myself based on the blogs in the list that I fancied.

I wish I had time to work on this, but I don't. I'm very busy with wedding plans and moving into a new house. But if you like the idea, how would you tweak it to make this concept better?


by Brett Rogers, 1/18/2007 8:47:10 AM


I agree! Blogrolls no longer suffice as a great mechanism to share mostly for the reasons you stated.

Are you thinking some sort of blogroll widget for a sidebar or a complete web application.

We should discuss this at our next meeting. Maybe it's something I can put together in between projects.



Posted by Andy Brudtkuhl, 1/19/2007 8:59:52 AM

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