Congrats to Digg for NOT Making an iPhone App!

Seems like a lot of companies are jumping on the “We have to create an iPhone App bandwagon”, whether it makes sense or not.

Well I want to give my congratulations to for resisting the urge.  They have alternatively updated their mobile Web site.

It’s even easier to access Digg on the go with the new mobile version of Digg. This enhanced version – found at – is perfect for phones that support the full web browsing experience, such as a Treo, Blackberry or that new iPhone you just waited in line all morning to get.

That’s right. There is one Web site that will work on a Treo, Blackberry or an iPhone.

Now don’t get me wrong.  There are definitely use cases where it makes more sense to create an iPhone app.  Due to the lack of Flash support for Safari on the iPhone, if you wanna create a game or use audio or video, it’d make more sense to create an iPhone app.

If you wanna use the GPS/Location based services, the camera, or the accelerometer, it’d make more sense to create an iPhone app.  I do ask though… couldn’t standard API calls be created that makes it possible for these to be accessed from the browser?

Digg (Quietly) Releases a New iGoogle Widget

Digg's New iGoogle Widget

Google’s personalized home page service iGoogle is one of my viewports into the world.  It is also how I mainly interact with Digg.

I was pleasantly surprised today when I noticed that Digg had updated their iGoogle widget.

Before you could just get a listing of the recent top stories.  Now you can flip see the recent top news stories, images, or videos either separately or together.  There is even the little news story image, like on Digg. You can see your friends activity.  Finally, you can also select specific topics that you want to see.

I think this is a PERFECT example of a Web application letting you take the functionality you enjoy with you.  You use Digg in the comfort of an environment that makes sense for you.  In this case, it’s iGoogle… and a lot of people use iGoogle.

On a related note: why isn’t Digg blogging about this?  Fanboys can only be fanboys if they know what you’re doing.

Where to find me when I’m not blogging…

Every once and a while you’ll notice that i’ve gone a day or two without blogging.  This doesn’t mean that i’ve gone completely off the grid.  It just means that I’ve probably gotten really busy between my work and after work lifes.

Chances are that during a lull you can probably find some type of my activity on a number of different Web 2.0 applications…

If you wanna keep up on my various comings and goings when I’m not blogging, by all means please add me as a contact or friend on one of these services.

If it’s possible to put in a message with your “friend request”, just say that you read my blog.

Do you use Digg? If so, what is your username?

My Digg Profile

Ever since they made their recent round of changes, I’ve been using Digg more and more to find interesting stories on the Web.

I think one of my favorite features is to see what sites my friends are digging. Their diggs mean more than that of some random dude on the site. Plus its an easier way to filter through the 1000s of articles that go up everyday on Digg, without just depending on what’s recently popular.

The thing is… for this aspect of Digg to be useful, more of my friends need to use it. Do you use Digg? If so, what’s your user name? If you don’t use Digg, why don’t you use Digg?

Digg Redesign Launches But Still No OpenID Support

The Digg community woke up this morning to a new design of their favorite Web site.  Kevin Rose and Daniel Burka announced the redesign as a step toward allowing them to add new features like Digg Images. (Big whoop! Geeks will be voting on their favorite lolcat. It’s nothing that exciting.)

I was kind of hoping that we’d finally get OpenID support at Digg but alas alack no such luck.

Has the excitement around OpenID fizzled out? It just seems like there aren’t many big companies with are following through with their support of the technology.  It was kind of hoping that support at Digg would help to keep the torch going.

You Are Not In Control

I’m going to tell you something that they probably don’t talk about in advertising and marketing classes. You’re not in control of your product or in control of your brand. Your users vote with their feet. They decide your fate.

What amazes me is that so many companies, organizations, and people think they can tell their users what to think.  There is this idea that all you have to do is put out the magic marketing campaign and everything will be better.  Reality just doesn’t work that way.

Your users are going to talk about your product. They’re going to talk about your brand. The question is do you wanna be part of the conversation?

This is going to take time. It’s going to take time away from your other initiatives. You can start a blog but it’s not going to magically write itself. You can get an online forum but it’s not going to start itself.  I think you’ll see that building community ultimately pays off.

One of the best examples of this is Digg. They listen to their community and let them take substantial ownership of the product and the brand.

Digg recently instituted some changes to their comments. People didn’t like some of the changes. Kevin Rose asked for everyone’s feed back and listened to what people had to say. They changed the Digg comments again. They knew it was their users that they were there to serve so it was best to listen to what they wanted.

Even a more extreme case is back in May 2007, Digg users were spreading the HD-DVD copy protection key around the site.  Digg quickly took it down.  There was an uproar.  There users spoke and said we want to spread the key wherever they want to put it.  While this may not be the  action I would’ve taken, Digg changed course, decided to get behind their users,  and let them spread the key as they wish.   This endeared Digg even more to its fan base.

You may ask, “What has this gotten Digg?”  Well their numbers have been consistently going up.

The lesson of the day is that you have to listen to your users.  Have a conversation with your users.  You users are in control of your fate. Launches an iPhone Optimized Site

Digg on the iPhone

Kevin Rose and the crew at have just launched an iPhone optimized version of their site ( It’s really really cool.

It’s one of many sites that take advantage of Joe Hewitt’s iPhone User Interface template. This means that it uses the inherent interactions found in the iPhone.

It only shows the recently popular stories but, unlike Digg River, when you click on a story you get to see the story description and the top 5 comments. It looks really nice.

They did the whole site in 48 hours. Kudos to them!

This gives me a few ideas for my own iPhone optimized apps.