I love what they’ve done to blogs.msdn.com

Actually, i really don't.  However, if you do like it please let me know.  Seriously, if there is anything good about it tell me so I can get a balanced view of the pros/cons of this.  Thanks!

Comments (21)
  1. Vivek Iyer says:

    I use an RSS reader to read blogs from msdn.com and I would say I am pretty satisfied. The only complaint I have is that the feed does not show the complete article. Sometimes I need to visit the website to see if the article is actually interesting.

  2. James says:

    The item description shows up as a tooltip in my browser, so I’d actually prefer it to be short and summary-like: that’s how I decide whether to read the referenced article properly. Being devoid of formatting and abbreviated is an improvement 🙂

  3. Joku says:

    Well I don’t like it. The old style page with full articles and full list of bloggers in the same page should be atleast an option.

  4. Michal says:

    It generally sucks, but there is one point: it drives traffic to your personal blog (provided that your posts are longer than the cutting-threshold of weblogs.asp.net main page). When people click on the link to get the full content, they are more apt to leave comments etc.

  5. AT says:

    My ISP realy love how blogs.msnd.com orginised.

    I’ve to check over 600 RSS URLs to get full content of blogs and I pay real money from my pocket for traffic !

    Sure "302 Not Modified" helps a few – but once there are one additional post or edit to existing one – I’ve to redownload last 15-20 items 🙁

    ISPs love RSS !! 😉

  6. sebmol says:

    I liked the old way much better. The only time I ever actually went to a personal blog site was to read the comments. Can we get the full-length articles back? Or at least have another page that shows them in full?

  7. Tom says:

    The old look was so much better. I agree with sebmol, I would keep uptodate entirely from the main page.

  8. developer says:

    msdn rss size is too large, they might make a summary for low speed internet conneciton users. but Why not both?

    I prefer to have both RSS url, so we switch from summary to full articles.

  9. Juha says:

    Currently I’m not using "my own" computer, so I do not like to idea of setting any rss readers on the machine. I have been relying on the http://blogs.msdn.com to fill my needs. Does not work anymore, since it is only showing small snippets of the entries and reading them one-by-one, clicking for each entry would take forever.

  10. Luc Cluitmans says:

    … but I can somewhat understand it.

    The thing I hate most, more than the fact that only a short snippet of each post is shown in the aggregate blog, is that all formatting is lost. Please, at least keep the linebreaks, italic/bold tags and UL/LI tags. You often have to click the link just to make the snippet sensible.

    I understand the need to cut down the traffic. But can’t that be done in a slightly less dramatic way? I realize the setting of showing 50 entries in the ‘firehose feed’ already wasn’t enough to keep up with the posting rate, and increasing it would have made the bandwidth problem worse. But can’t that problem be solved in other ways?

    If you take a look at how a similar problem is solved in mailing lists: make a ‘digest’: a set of all postings made in a certain N hour period; format it once and save it, never modify it. When serving it, you only need to serve that preformatted file. Such a digest file can have its attributes set to be cachable, so clients don’t need to ask for it so often (assuming they don’t bypass the cache). Note that this (obviously) means aggregating the posts from, e.g. 1 day, from midnight to midnight, and not aggregating the posts from ‘the last 24 hours’; the latter is not cachable.

  11. Thanks all. Keep it coming. I’ll aggregate it at the end of the week and send this off to the powers that be.

  12. Martins says:

    I was checking blogs.msdn.com earlier 4 times a day. Now, because of the changes I am almost thinking to abandon it!

    Old way I could quickly find what I am interested in and what not.

    Please, give back old blogs!!!

  13. Aussie says:

    Not as good as it once was. All the posts are now "genericized" and no longer stand out.

  14. Jake says:

    I don’t mind it. I always use the RSS to find out what I want to read, and then I go to the post’s orginal home anyway since I want to see what else that person has been talking about. I find that it’s the only way I can keep all these blog authors straight.

    Basically all I do is open the link to he blog into its own tab as I go, and its not much different than getting the whole feed right then and there.

  15. Daniel Ramski says:

    The new format is not so great. When the full posts were shown, it lent itself well to the "catches my eye" thing, where you skim all four paragraphs of an article, and your eye catches a single sentence in the third paragraph that piques your interest so you go back and give the article a serious reading. It’s hard for that to happen when all you can see is the introductory lines of a post.

    This is especially true for longer articles, where the author gets makes a salient point about halfway down the page. How am I supposed to know if I’d be interested, if all I can see is the analogy the author starts with? Maybe it’s just me, but I used to scan EVERY article on blogs.msdn.com, and clicked through to many of them. I discovered lots of great bloggers that way. But the new format makes all the posts look the same; how do I know that the fifth post on SP2 is the one that addresses something of interest to me, if all I can see is the obligatory "well XPSP2 is out, and I guess I should comment on it" paragraph that heads up most of the posts?

    Incidentally, I suspect you’ll get polar opposite responses on this question, divided along a single line: people who read the blogs.msdn.com webpage itself (who’ll hate the new format), vs people who use RSS to read it (who’ll think the new format is an improvement). The important difference, however, is that while both groups were reading the content before, now the RSS group is marginally happier, while the experience has been severely crippled for the readers of the webpage itself. The new format probably won’t gain any new RSS readers, but it will lose webpage readers. And I can’t imagine how the MSDN editors could see that as a good thing.

  16. I hate the new format of clipping the posts! I hate clicking on every other link to Read More.

    On the bright side, I end up reading less and judging the post on the first few lines .. could be dangerous to judge a post by few lines .. like judging a book by it cover 🙂

  17. Nicholas Allen says:

    I like how the server no longer dies every hour when all the RSS readers hit it. Plus, Cyrus can no longer post giant flash movies to the front page.

  18. Brian Duff says:

    Cyrus, It sucks like a thing that sucks a lot.

    To be honest, I based the design of http://www.orablogs.com on blogs.msdn.com, and now I’m wondering whether to follow suite.


    OK. Maybe not. In Oracle, developers control the blogs! Long live developers.

    Erm… actually the layout of orablogs.com sucks right now because our bloggers insist on using interesting and disparate styles on their blogs which seems to fsk up the aggregator. Oh well… 🙂

  19. MichaelM says:

    I don’t like it at all.

    I used to get all blogs and use Outlook/Lookout to search through all the history of the blogs back to 1/22/04. Now I have to subscribe individually to get the same functionality.

    I do understand that there was huge cost involved. But I know that there’s very little chance of me picking up new bloggers now because the overall feed has become much less useful.

  20. Any more feedback? I’m goign to be sending this information off soon. Thanks!

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