Since CodePen is already such a lovely social place (thanks for being cool, gang!), we've long had our sights on improving the social features. We were hoping the Popout Preview made things a bit more social. We integrated Blocking to make sure we had appropriate safety features in place.
Now we're digging into deeper stuff, like what your Following page actually shows and hopefully making it much nicer. For example, your following page will include some context now about what other people you follow are up to!
Check out these two Pens from my own feed:
I'm seeing the first because someone I follow added that Pen to a Collection they own, and the second because 4 people I follow all loved the same Pen (which is pretty rad really, I definitely wanna see stuff where a bunch of my friends are all into it).
Looks like Ricky there has been doing some cool stuff. The Following page has now recommended him to me:
And you'll see other things in there too, like when people you follow fork things, when Pens are picked, when comments are left, and other things.
It's still largely a page where it's showing you stuff your friends have made, but with a bit of flair to it and hopefully a bit more interesting.
The tech behind it is pretty interesting. We're using a service called Stream which does a lot of the heavy lifting of "feeds" and combining/ranking/contextualizing them for us. This is our very first thing that has gone live that is powered in part by Stream, and it's not taking advantage of all they can do. There is more to come that will prove to be even more interesting and fun!