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Organizing feeds

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cactusmelon
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Last seen: 12 years 3 months ago
Joined: 03/10/2010 - 09:21
Organizing feeds

Is there a way to create feed categories? my feed list is a mile long and it would be tremendous if i could put them in a folder/category. Am I missing something?

Thanks!

ChicagoPete
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Last seen: 5 years 1 month ago
Joined: 12/11/2008 - 16:37
New and In Progress

I've found that the New and In Progress filter helps a lot with my feed list. It automatically updates itself after feed updates and when you read/finish a feed item. I leave that on all the time now and don't feel the need for categories like I used to.

If you haven't already, give it a shot and see if that helps the long feed list blues.

eric
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Joined: 11/06/2008 - 22:02
Categories

I do have categories on the list of things to do.

Using categories requires manually creating categories and associating feeds to them. I have been trying to develop some alternate but automatic ways of filtering, like filtering by audio/video/news and also what Pete mentioned...the new and in progress. I think this probably works for most people with a small-medium number of feeds.

We do have some users with over 100 feeds and something better is probably needed. It seems to me to be difficult to manage categories for that many feeds. Maybe a text filter could be used to filter the feed list based on some characters you could type. That would be nearly as quick as selecting a category, and wouldn't require managing the categories. This solves the problem of trying to find a particular feed you are looking for but it doesn't address browsing through a list for a category though.

Shad
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Joined: 12/06/2010 - 23:42
Some ideas for categorization

Perhaps, make it optional via preferences to add categories. I imagine the way you might go about doing it without cluttering up the UI is to make an expandable/retractable list item that stands out, maybe a different background color.
It would look the same as the current articles/podcast items, with the feed icon, but would have an additional +/-, or up/down arrow, and perhaps maybe a folder symbol and a different background color just to make it stand out from an article/podcast. If not too much of an issue, for less confusion, incorporate the open/close/folder in the corner of the podcast/article icon. User can click on it to expand the contents below, or close it.
The articles/podcast items don't necessarily have to have the article/podcast icon, it's already on the folder item. That would free up some more room on the article list items for whatever.
An example of an articles view might be something like this...

----------------------------
Expand All | Collapse All
----------------------------
           |  Science News
folder icon|  5 feeds
          +|  40 items, 5 new
----------------------------
           |  Tech News
folder icon|  2 feeds
          -|  2 items, 2 new
----------------------------
           |  Cnet Tech News
 Cnet icon |  bla bla bla
           |  5 days ago
----------------------------
           |  Ars Technica
  Ars icon |  bla bla bla
           |  4 days ago
----------------------------
           |  App News
folder icon|  1 feed
          +|  0 items
----------------------------

The feed view can implement categories in the same way, but with the 'last updated' information. Filters would still work in the feed view, but might not display irrrelevant categories - for example, you filter out news, and no categories that have only news articles in them would be shown. But say, if I had a 'Science' category with both podcasts and news feeds in them, then it would be shown. I'm sure most users would create seperate podcast and news categories as they are two different activities (I have time to scan the news, no time for podcasts right now).
Instead of 'Add Feed' menu button on the feeds view, it would be just 'Add', a pop-up to ask: Folder or Feed
On the item views, it would have to be an additional button.

eric
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Last seen: 2 years 3 months ago
Joined: 11/06/2008 - 22:02
I'm still thinking

I'm not ignoring this post, just thinking about it some.

JNavas
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Joined: 11/08/2010 - 10:59
Labels/Tags instead of Categories

I prefer the paradigm of labels or tags over categories with the ability to add more than one label/tag to a given subscription. Labels/tags would be invisible unless created. Then you'd have the ability to display the subscriptions for any label/tag, like a filter.

FunkTrooper
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Last seen: 8 months 1 week ago
Joined: 01/02/2010 - 08:11
Some thoughts on tags...

This would indeed be awesome!

But as for its implementation... you wouldn't be able to have a bunch of expandable folders on the main feeds list. With the rest of the app the way it is, tags would probably end up being custom filters, like how you can filter for video, audio etc.

But if it's implemented that way, it loses some of its appeal. The ease with which you can navigate the tagged episodes would be diminished to the point where it'd probably be quicker to do away with the tags altogether.

So, errr... I dunno really. It'd be awesome if it could be implemented well. But I don't know how I'd implement it.

Having recently been playing with Windows Phone 7, something has come to mind though. Maybe you could, from the main feeds list, swipe sideways to cycle through different tags. So initially you'd see all feeds. And from one side to another to see feeds tagged with tag A. And again for tag B, etc. And then it'd roll around, and you'd be back where you started. I'm sure implementing this on Android wouldn't be nearly as smooth as the positively delicious Windows Phone UI though. (Before you start getting jealous of Windows Phone, it may be delicious, but it's *very* limited, and there's no way I'd swap even my old HTC Hero for a shiny new Win Phone)

JNavas
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Last seen: 10 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: 11/08/2010 - 10:59
Android swiping vs Windows Phone 7

Android can do side swiping at least as well as Windows Phone 7 --
that's how Froyo Gallery moves from image to image.

That said, I don't personally favor that paradigm as the only option for Labels/Tags,
because you might have to repeatedly swipe through a very long list --
I'd also like to have a pop-up menu of Labels/Tags in alphabetical order,
and I think the Filter button could serve the purpose of both Type and Label/Tag:

   +------------+
   |Audio       |
   |Video       | <- types
   |Text        |
   +------------+
   |Humor       |
   |News        | <- labels/tags
   |Stories     |
   |Tech        |
   |...         |
   +------------+

p.s. I don't like the current Filter list of just icons -- I would at least like to have text labels in addition to icons (as in my example above).

eric
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Joined: 11/06/2008 - 22:02
Categories

There's a lot of good input in this thread about this. It gives me a pretty good picture of how it would be used.

The way I had planned it a while back was pretty much as JNavas layed out the filters. So the categories would just look like another filter. In addition, the categories could also be used on the playlist screen. So you could select a category to be played as a playlist. I also would like categories to be optional. I'm trying to keep the UI as simple as possible and as JNavas said, doing this would make them invisible unless you wanted to use the feature.

In terms of categories/labels/tags, I prefer the term categories because I think it will relate better to the non-techie crowd even though labels/tags is more accurate technically. And I do see the value in being able to associate more than one category per feed.

My main concern with implementing this was not making it harder for new users, but I think with the ideas introduced here, it's possible to add this without making the app harder to use.

I moved the issue for this up in the schedule and added a reference to this post - http://mantis.snoggdoggler.com/view.php?id=37

JNavas
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Last seen: 10 years 2 weeks ago
Joined: 11/08/2010 - 10:59
Terminology of Label/Tag vs Category

Cool -- thanks!
Regarding terminology of Label/Tag vs Category, I hear what you're saying, but consider also the issue of consistency -- Google is using the term Label in Gmail (and elsewhere, Bookmarks, Docs, Reader), and while I don't think it's a big issue, I do think there's merit in consistency. In the Google world, Category is more like your Type.