More on NetNewsWire and Updated Items

It’s starting to look like there are two ways to deal with the issue. They may co-exist—in fact, I’m leaning toward doing both.

1. A pref that allows you to include updated items when going to the previous/next unread item.

In other words, if you hit the space bar, the next item might be an updated item or it might be an unread item.

It’s a simple solution—but if you turn it on it means you’d end up seeing all the little typo fixes updates.

2. An algorithm for determining significant updates. This should be more complex than just a change in length.

Manton Reece suggested among other things that counting the number of links in a description is a good idea—a change in links is probably a significant change, more than just a typo fix. In other words, descriptions aren’t just any old text, they’re text that often contains links, and should be analyzed that way. (They’re also generally made up of sentences and paragraphs, as opposed to C code or something like that.)

What about an HTML diff view?

Aaron Swartz suggested that an HTML diff view would be cool for updated items. And I agree—at least as an option for power users. But the HTML display of updated items is a different issue than whether or not you get to them via the space bar.

28 Jul 2003