links for 2006-03-31

links for 2006-03-30

Craigslist redo redone

(craigslist redo redo, originally uploaded by mathowie)

I’ve been a longtime user of Craigslist. I got my San Francisco Apartment using it, bought a few things, and eventually I met Craig and we’ve talked at conferences together about what it takes to run a community. At the recent SXSW fest, a panel redesigned Craigslist. It’s a definite improvement and it looks fantastic (they redesigned the listing pages as well). Other designers took a crack at a craigslist redo that was closer to the original.

The one thing I really didn’t like about the SXSW Craigslist redo is that the top bar is all wrong. The dark color pushes it back for me, in a banner-blindness sort of way. I didn’t notice it at all for the first minute I looked at the new site. Then I thought about how I use Craigslist, and I’m a big searcher. I either search from the front page, or I dive into the appropriate Sale/Wanted section and search there. I know the tech behind Craigslist is pretty simple and they’re not much of a search/IT company, but I would love it if they surfaced search in such a way.

So I redid it. Here is the full size version. I took a screenshot of the redesign and moved stuff around in Photoshop to my liking. It’s obviously a very Google-like redesign, but then that’s how I use Craigslist. I could picture the Craigslist subpages carrying the search at the top just like a Google result page (just the top 100px or so), so this theme could be continued throughout the site.

links for 2006-03-29

links for 2006-03-24

links for 2006-03-23

Friendster or No Friendster

I’d heard a bunch of buzz about the show Deal or No Deal on the Freakonomics blog so when I tuned into catch my first show I was slightly disappointed. I loved the 80s because there were three hours of game shows on three networks every morning (a highlight of staying home sick from school) and my favorite shows always had an element of quiz show in them. So I was surprised to find Deal or No Deal getting all this buzz and being on several nights a week when there’s no skill or knowledge in the game at all — it’s purely luck. I might as well be watching lottery balls drop. I suppose that’s why it’s on so much and advertised heavily — the show is not long for this world, so they have to milk it while they can.

I saw a couple contestants perform well. The goal of the show seems to be: guess on cases until you get a bank offer near $100k, then quit. But I saw one guy turn down a $91,000 offer and keep pressing on, until at the end he had almost nothing. He stayed in the luck game too long, let his greed surpass common sense and came away with almost nothing.

As I was reading danah’s post about Friendster and MySpace I was reminded that Friendster was exactly like that bad contestant. Friendster had something that was hot and now and was fielding buyout offers left and right, but decided to press on. They made a few missteps along the way (danah covers them well) and now Friendster’s like a lone case with $75 in it, not really worth anything to anyone.

links for 2006-03-22