Reactions and Polls
After the hackathon, we continued working on a lot of new features. One very important feature many users requested was the ability to like a post. We thoroughly thought about it and in the end, decided to implement a full “reactions” system instead which basically allows you to react on a specific post with any emoji you want. We wanted to give users an easy way to express their opinion and agreement about a post without restricting their creativity or expressiveness. We were really happy to see that most users loved this new feature.
Part of the reactions feature was also a fully revamped emoji picker, which divides emojis into categories and also has a “Frequently used” section to improve the user experience. Nice thing is that we could re-use this new emoji picker in other places like the post creation process.
Building on top of reactions, the next major feature we tackled was Polls. Polls basically work like reactions from a technical view, except that they use numbers instead of emojis. Thanks to being able to re-use this we could implement polls extremely fast because we only needed to focus on the UI.
The single biggest new feature since the hackathon is the new notifications system. You now get a notification when someone follows you and/or comments on one of your posts or comments. This was quite hard to implement because it presented us with a lot of challenges, especially regarding spam prevention. While the notifications are not perfect yet, we’re working on optimizing them based on community feedback.
Other cool stuff
We also made some experiments leveraging the data interoperability of SkyFeed since then. For example, a tool that mirrors a YouTube channel to SkyFeed or a SkyFeed-to-Hugo converter which allows users to automatically sync their SkyFeed posts to their personal blog.
We also switched to our new Handshake domain
skyfeed/, fixed a lot of issues and introduced some quality of life improvements like being able to scroll on the whole page or improved and more predictable navigation.
Because SkyFeed is cross-platform, we published a public beta version for Android and tested an internal beta for iOS devices.
We’re currently working on optimizing the user experience by adding a lot of small improvements here and there (for example combining multiple reposts) and also making the onboarding process for new users more straightforward and easy to use.
The notifications system will also soon be extended to support mentioning other users in your posts and notifying them. This will also come with the ability to block users to prevent unwanted distractions.
Another big feature is the integration of SkyMessage, which would allow users to chat with each other end-to-end-encrypted using direct messages.
More advanced features like topics (think hashtags or subreddits) and support for monetization are also planned.
We would like to thank everyone for using SkyFeed and providing extensive feedback that helped us make it to what it is today! Also, a big thanks to the Sia/Skynet team for their work towards a decentralized internet without which we would obviously not have been able to build SkyFeed.
You can try out SkyFeed here: https://skyfeed.social