I started using Daylife just after it first launched. Since then I dropped if from my “Daily Stuff” tabs in FireFox that I usually open simulatenously when I go online. I liked a lot of things about the service, but it just wasn’t something that I needed at the time.
Just having revisited the site, I noticed some major changes to the user experience. The huge, page-filling image that previously occupied the start page has been removed in favor of more genre-conforming elements for online news sites. And for the most part, the site is far less image-rich than before. In areas like “Celebrity” this is unfortunate, but overall it’s probably a good move. With more focus on text and links, Daylife should be able to better expose and leverage their algorithms and entity extraction. And I like the basic information design on the site, so it works well.
A next step for them might be to expose more user-generated content and metadata. Comments, blogging, tagging, etc., would set it apart from other similar news services. (Now, there’s a good quesiton: how can tagging be leveraged on a current awareness service, where articles come on and go off the radar in a matter of days? With no time to incubate a collection of tags, what do you do there?). But their API is already a huge step in the Web 2.0 direction, so I’m going to knock them.
Anyway, I’m going to give it another shot and add it back to my daily tabs.