Flipboard Update Preview

Jeffrey Zeldman Presents, viewed in Flipboard; screenshot by Craig Mod

FLIPBOARD, AS YOU DOUBTLESS know, is a social media magazine for iPad. Part RSS reader, part iPad publication uniquely curated by each reader, the app brings serendipity, discovery, and typographic excellence to the experience of keeping up with one’s friends on Twitter, Facebook, and so on. This morning (last night in Japan), a new, improved version of Flipboard was launched, offering designers like us even more visual pleasure and rewarding the hours we put into our content’s semantic underpinnings.

Designer Craig Mod, in a letter, told me his “goal was to try and produce one of the best RSS experiences out there.” It’s accomplished via features like those listed below and more, as seen in these screenshots Craig sent me from his pre-launch tests:

  • auto-small caps
  • portrait and landscape optimized typography
  • full bleed images
  • flowing of text based on image size and location in the document
  • auto-generation of [figure] and [figcaption] objects based on alt
    text on images

Adds Craig, “What’s great is that the more semantic and clean your feed, the better it will look in the app.”

Download Flipboard or update your copy in the iTunes Store and see.

Jeffrey Zeldman Presents, viewed in Flipboard; screenshot by Craig Mod

7 thoughts on “Flipboard Update Preview

  1. Thankfully there are more and more reasons to write clean semantic code aside from “this is how it SHOULD be done”.

    This is a nice tool to use to convince managers that clean proper code is important. Before we just had “Accessibility!” as a rallying cry, but this gives us something visual to show the benefits. Sadly, concern over the appearance of a feed in RSS readers like Flipboard will probably convince far more managers to budget time and resources for properly clean semantic code than accessibility ever did.

  2. Good stuff. On the reader side of things, it should be noted that Read It Later introduced the same sort of full-bleed pictures and excellent semantic structure in its recent update. Its iPad app is gorgeous, and in my opinion runs circles around Instapaper.

  3. Small but important correction:
    ‘his goal’ should be ‘our goal’ — all your see in these templates was most definitely a group effort.

  4. Ok, let’s try to rewrite this one to be a little less smug:

    I have a very hard time taking claims of good “typography” seriously when layouts use blank lines between grafs and no paragraph indents and wall-to-wall measures.


    I prefer paragraph indents over blank lines in between paragraphs. Also, I find rag-right text easier to read than justified.

    Ahh, much better.

  5. Chris, if I wanted my “news” “formatted” like MS Word for Windows, I’d use that.

    Please open five books at random from your bookshelf. Lemme guess: The only ones that use this abomination are from O’Reilly, right? Doesn’t that tell you something?

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