When we were invited to build a sample application for the Digg API contest, my first thought was to do something cool with another new release. We’ve been doing a ton of work with Apollo (our “gTimer” time management app for example), and I decided it would be fun to do something more “creative” with it.
The concept was to build a desktop Digg reader that I would personally want to use (I’m fussy). I wanted it to be something really functional and useful. I wanted an Apollo application that added value to the Digg experience, and skipped the seemingly obligatory cube flip effect (fast becoming the hallmark of Apollo apps). This wasn’t planned to be an application that wowed you at first sight, but rather be an application you’d want to keep using after the first day or two.
The end result was DiggTop. It’s a nice, small (<500kb), unobtrusive (especially in mini mode), cross-platform application (Mac OSX and Windows XP) that lets you view a custom blended Digg feed on your desktop. We mainly aimed to keep it simple and usable, but we also threw in a few cool features, like keyword feed support, custom article notifications, video preview, application update notification, and image slideshows. I'd love to go into depth about it's features and how we built it, but I'm catching a plane to FitC Toronto in the morning, and should probably finish packing. Instead, I'll leave you with a screenshot, and a link to the DiggTop home page, where you can learn more, and download the alpha application for free.
Check out Kevin Rose’s blog entry for information on the API, and the contest (which is sponsored in part by adobe).