What’s Wrong With iGoogle (and other similar sites)?

There are plenty of AJAX portals out there. There’s iGoogle, Netvibes, PagePlakes, and others as well. Do you know what’s wrong with them? None of them are right. You see, I only occasionally use any of these AJAX portals because they just don’t work the way I want them to.

Netvibes comes closest (with iGoogle second). I like being able to add a feed-reading box nearly instantly, for one thing. What’s wrong with Netvibes? I don’t like the weird splash-screen while it loads, and I’d prefer to be prompted for my login immediately, instead of getting a “demo portal”. Too bad, Netvibes is really good.

iGoogle is okay, but it’s a pain to login to that too. You have to either go to www.google.com/ig/ or go to google.com and click the iGoogle link. I don’t like having to leave my Google Account logged in on public computers, which I use now and then, either. I never thought I’d say this, but the design is too spartan. This is coming from someone who’s a big fan of whitespace, apple-style layouts, etc.

Pageflakes is worse than netvibes. They give you a stupid pop-up box-thingy that tells you to register. Then there’s a puny little login link down at the bottom. If they put a login form in that box, I’d use PageFlakes.

You see? Every one of these AJAX portals has the same sort of flaw. I don’t like it. Why can’t they just fix it and be done with it? Netvibes would be the ultimate AJAX portal if they’d just throw up a login form that opens in a popup-box like PageFlakes’s register thing.


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