This past Thanksgiving week, the tech and product team at Gawker got to spend a few days hacking before the holidays. My team — Stephen Kao, Robin Stice and Ali Philippides — collaborated on a content discovery prototype modeled off of the wildly popular dating app, Tinder. Let us introduce you to, Kindr.
Our goal was to create a fun and mildly tacky way to filter through a blog feed, discovering interesting material along the way — swipe right to read later, swipe left to dismiss. The whole thing was truly a collaborative effort and showed that design and development can happen rapidly in parallel. We all brainstormed the core functions of the product and started work on a low fidelity prototype, while Robin continued to design a polished app to aspire to. We ended up with something in between (given the time constraints), but fully functional nonetheless!
Below are two screens from the desired mobile view. On the left, the kindr game. You can choose a Kinja blog to check out latest content, swiping left and right at your leisure. Clicking the fire icon in the top right corner takes you to your feed to manage/read your bookmarked articles.
The prototype we have now feeds you content from the blog you are currently on, and lets you read and manage articles that you've swiped right. Additionally, you can click the story card and read the story before you swipe. All data is fetched from our API and cached in local storage, as are your bookmarked articles. When the user is reaching the end of the feed, we grab the next page of results from the '/latest' endpoint, filtering out any posts that the user has already seen.
As a fun enhancement, we've added an "Other Hotties" module to the feed section of the app powered by Mat Hamer's elastic search app. When you check out your feed, a request is sent to elastic search with the IDs of the posts you've liked. We then return a set of related posts that the user has not seen on kindr. From that set, you can quickly 'x' them out or click the fire icon to add them to your feed and carousel through. These posts are not specific to the blog your on either, so it's a great way to check out what else is happening on Kinja. It'd be great to power the whole app off of this, which we may do in the future!
This is very much a prototype and could use a bit of performance enhancing. Given that all data is persisted in local storage, frequent burners may opt to clear their local data from time to time. Check it out for yourself on Gawker, iO9, or whatever your preferred Kinja may be!