upgrades has added numerous subsections to the front page, which were always available before, but now are easier to get at and customise. There’s an (18+ advised) Not Safe For Work section and a number of other sub-categories in an improved, faster loading interface.

Reddit has been a lot more informative than Digg for a while, but these updates almost make it just as cool as digg too. I don’t mean cool in a small way – I mean it in the way that there’s only so many political dirt exposés, mainstream news bashing blogs and anti-scientology opinion pieces you can take in one day. The old site design suffered a lot for appearing to emphasise these stories and users who shared these views tended to club together and hog the agenda.

The new changes, however, make it easy to mix Lady titty (and I’m sure Man Willy if you’re into that) pics and filthy jokes, alongside a fair helping of serious content as well, to lighten the mood from page to page. Now that it’s easier to include more frivolous so-called subreddits on the main page (further customised in your preferences panel) it remains to be seen if reddit won’t loose something of what made it cool (as in nerdy) before.

Any changes made in an attempt to open a site up to a wider audience can’t be a bad thing and I’m already a big fan of the quicker loading and clutter free design – but I can’t help “feeling” like digg is still my homeboy. Reddit is a friendly enough gatecrasher – fairly well behaved when it’s drunk, but only really welcome to stay because it’s the buddy of someone you like and you know he’ll make sure it goes home quietly once the cheep booze has run out.

It’s still very frustrating that stories appear to have no sort-by-date relevance. If you leave page 1 open for as long as it takes to read three or four stories, by the time you open page 2 those same links from page 1 will reappear on that page and on page 3 and so on – until by page 4 you’re mixed up between what you read 2 days ago and stories which are still climbing the popularity ladder.

Not being a programmer I have no idea if this is something which it is easy to fix – or even if it something which reddit’s designers have done deliberately – although why that would be, I have no idea – since it’s one of a number of functionality issues, including the still broken and dreadfully unreliable search, which still have me going back to digg – where, for all it’s many issues, (the always promised but never delivered UseNet style comments system) digg still feels more mature; more like the gang leader, albeit one which shits itself in a fight and runs home crying for mummy. – A much welcome feature is reddit’s Music Only section, which you can one-click include in your main page’s ‘feed’, or by clicking in the bold new (love it or hate it) right-hand side pane.


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