June 6, 2008
I have been an enthusiastic user of reddit.com for nearly 2 years now. I loved its simplicity, that it eschewed almost all of the user interface garbage that Digg suffered, and that it was filled with high-quality links.
Recently, as you may know, the new “2.0″ version of reddit was released. This incorporated many new features, and several changes to the UI to make it more AJAX-y. Except they’ve broken it. First of all, everything moved. Whereas I knew where everything in the UI was (and it only had about 6 features), now things are hidden under sub-menus for god knows what reason, and items have been moved around, and nobody thought to put a “Make it look like old reddit” feature. Surely that should have been the first item on the list? Also, the interface has gone from being single colour (blue-on-white) with a small logo, to looking much more like a CSS stylised website; I liked that I could have it on my screen without drawing attention to the fact.
The biggest problem for me, though, is that they’ve broken it. I never used to get server errors, submission problems, or timeouts. Right now, and for the last 20 minutes, reddit has been down – I can’t even get the front page to load up. The site is still there, as it’s giving me an error message (”An error occurred while processing your request. Reference #97.2cf50508.1212710545.26217039″ – catchy) but no headlines, no links, no submissions, nada. The very essence of reddit taken away. I’m not annoyed because the site is down – these things happen – I’m annoyed because I strongly suspect it’s down to new “reddit 2.0″, and I can’t figure out where the motivation for the massive changes came from. Why change something if it works? My method of interacting with reddit didn’t need to change, so why go changing stuff just for the sake of it?
I think it might be time to look for a new, simpler news aggregator.