Betaworks delivered on its promise and launched the newly redesigned Digg Web site today. In fact, the site even comes a day earlier than expected. Just yesterday, Betaworks revealed that the news aggregation site would have a complete makeover that would do away with the headlines list, add photos, and integrate Facebook and Twitter into Digg scores.
"On July 20, we announced that we were turning Digg back into a startup and rebuilding it from scratch in six weeks," Betaworks wrote in a blog post. "After an intense month and a half, we managed to get the new Digg up and running on a fresh code base and infrastructure. We now have a solid foundation on which to build, and we expect to build fast."
With the Web site now live, Betaworks is ironing out the wrinkles to see what works and what doesn't. So far, the site has a more streamlined home page with photos attached to each headline. There's no more of the "Newsrooms," "Newsbar," and "Newswire" labels. Instead, the site highlights a single Digg feed with access to "Top Stories," "Popular Stories," and "Upcoming."
Social media is a big component in the new Digg site. Users will still be able to Digg stories, but Facebook shares and tweets also factor into the prominence of a story. Users can see the breakdown of the new Digg score by rolling a cursor over scores. And for now, there aren't any comments -- however, they could resurface at a later date.
Here are more details from Betawork's blog post:
While today's launch is a milestone for us, we're more excited about what's coming next. In the subsequent weeks and months we will:
-- introduce network-based personalization features (like we do in News.me) to make Digg a more relevant and social experience
-- experiment with new commenting features
-- continue to iterate Digg for mobile Web
-- move the Web site forward with features like the Reading List, different views into the top stories on Digg, and more data to help users better understand why a particular story is trending
-- launch an API so that members of the development community can build all the products that we haven't even thought of yet
News of Betaworks buying the remnants of Digg came out earlier this month, and there's been speculation on whether the new owners can restore the site to its former glory. In the company's FAQ, Betaworks says it won't put ads on the site or accept sponsorships. So, it's unclear how the company plans to make money.
"We have little time and fewer resources to focus on anything but the user, who is our first, second, and third priority," Betaworks wrote in the FAQ. "We believe we can accomplish with 10 great engineers and designers what other companies do with a hundred and, by keeping our costs low, take our time to find a business model that does not disrupt or detract from the user experience."