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Manage Incoming Updates

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As users start to rely on a feed of vitality updates for news of their friends doings online and clues to interesting bookmarked or recommended items, it is important to give them tools for fine tuning the feed. Some refinement comes from the ability to add or remove sources (following or friending, vs. leaving or unfriending), but finer-grained options can involve the ability to ask for more or less of a certain type of content or of items from a specific person.

To avoid cluttering up an interface with a row of icons or widgets attached to every single update in a feed, it has proven more elegant to supply a small discreet icon for triggering a context menu, and even making that icon invisible until the user accidentally discovers it on hover.

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If I want more items from my friend Greg in my Facebook feed, I can point to the current item and when the Options icon appears, I can click on it to pop up a context menu.

Additional responsive choices for managing items (such as reporting abusive content) can be offered on the same menu, since the triggering item is so compact.

In an aggregated feed, it can be easy to lose track of items as they are rapidly supplanted by newer updates, so offering your users a way to filter the feed to show just items from a single source or to hide one or more sources can enable them to cut through the noise.

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Friendfeed offers a row of icons that the user can click to isolate just one single source of updates from the aggregated vitality feed they are viewing.


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