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Introducing TechNews (

Introducing - I encourage you to test it out! About a year ago, I weened myself off of Digg (at least partially) and moved onto Hacker News. Hacker News is the best mix of technology content - from headlines to analysis to discussion.

After sifting through various services, I found SlinkSet (also a YCombinator company). Uninterested in creating a Hacker News clone or competitor, I was intrigued by the ability to 'remix' my own favorite feeds along with articles submitted by friends and readers:

Tech News SlinkSet

It is an interesting way, if you will, to create your own 'distributed feed' (ala Facebook or Friendfeed - but without the direct network). Using SlinkSet's private mode, it is also a way to communicate with a distribution list.

SlinkSet is simple and a free service. My only critique is that it is based on iframes and consequently is not as flexible as you would like (in addition to being an SEO killer). It would be powerful to either

1. open the code (like Pligg or Wordpress) and allow users to develop against it, and/or 2. create a subscription version that allows further customization

Also worth noting, SlinkSet's custom service is terrific. They have converted an installation of SlinkSet into a feedback 'wall' and the founders interact ther directly with the users. Really a terrific example of what SlinkSet can be used for and how to interact with your userbase.

Google's New AdSense 'Scroll Through' Button for Graphics, Rich Media

This weekend, I spent time experimenting with Pligg and have to show for it... and while it's not much yet (!), it's already revealed quite a lot about Google AdSense. Yesterday I wrote about the growing rich-media inventory and today I noticed a new AdSense format. Below is a screenshot of a 728x60 leaderboard that has the standard "Ads by Google" logo in the corner. But above the logo is a carousel button to navigate forward and backward... almost like the scroll through buttons on text ads. But what's unique here is that the button advances to other graphical ads - and those ads are for the same company.

I can't figure out if this is a new treatment made specifically for single advertisers / campaigns - or if the intent is to roll the format out to all ad formats such that it can showcase more units more quickly. The challenge there is that the button won't always be compatible with graphical units (size, color, etc) and auto-scrolling through units would be far more confusing than with text.

The benefit to Google? More impressions. More real estate. And a lot more data on conversions and user interaction.

Google AdSense Next Button