Good Noows is a sleek personal news reader that lets you share the latest news while chatting with friends on Meebo, Twitter, Facebook Chat, AIM, MySpace IM or Google Talk. It strays away from the common news reader setup and lets you switch up your visual style on the fly. There are 9 unique styles to choose from and most of them are optimized for large monitors.
Signing into Good Noows is simple; you can use your Facebook, Twitter, Google, Yahoo or LinkedIn account to get started. After you login you’ll see a setup window; this is where you choose the type of content that you want to read.
They give you 12 predefined topics to choose from. If that’s not enough, you can add your own. Topics can be toggled on/off; by default they’re all set to on. When you click on a topic, the sources in the second column will change to match sources related to the topic. So, you can go through each topic and check off the sources that you want displayed. These sources can also be filtered by country for your convenience.
Each topic can also have its own visual style. You can switch up each style or simply use the same one for all; the choice is yours. Topics can be rearranged by dragging and dropping them. There is a good selection of topics to choose from but if you want to add your own you’ll need to add custom topics and sources. Soon you’ll be able to import your Google Reader OPML which will make customizing your sources even easier.
At the top of the reader there are a few options: decrease/increase font size, refresh, view local news, change visual style, translate, filter content and a button to save a filter as a label (that will appear on the left sidebar).
At the bottom is a Meebo bar where you can: share the page, create an application shortcut (on Chrome and Firefox), give feedback, learn about the site, see parters and developers and sign in to chat with your friends. This bottom bar can be hidden if it’s in the way.
With the Meebo bar of course comes their popular click to share feature. This lets you share content on your social networks with ease (see above). You can set up your other social accounts in your profile.
Clicking on a news item takes you to the original source and grays it out on the site so you know that it has been viewed. I refreshed the content to see if grayed out content would be totally removed but no such luck. So, content marked as read seems to remain in the stream.
Also, I do not see a way to “show more” headlines. There seems to be a maximum amount shown per source. Maybe this will be added in the future. Besides being able to share content, there is no other way to interact directly on the site. You cannot like items, add comments, etc.
Despite lacking a few features, I still have a great liking for Good Noows. I had fun setting it up – I can’t say that about many sites. It has a great UI with nice sharing and chat abilities. I also love being able to change the visual style for each individual topic.
Will I use Good Noows again? Definitely! How about you?