November 25, 2019
🚀 The Journey of Launching Daily — The Developer's New Tab
It's been almost two years since we have launched Daily. But even today, it is fascinating to think about how the idea was born, and how it all get started. You are all a part of our journey, and we want to share our story with you.
It started as a side project out of necessity; we have continuously been busy improving it and providing a better experience with every passing day. During this time, we made serious efforts to connect with our users, collect feedback, and improve. It has been nothing but an amazing journey so far! 🤞
🎉 Daily turned two last month! On achieving this milestone, we have finally decided to sit down and share our launch journey with you.
Daily is an open-source browser extension that replaces your new tab with the latest trending developer news. It gathers articles from tens of different handpicked sources and puts them in one place for you. Helping you stay on top of the latest developments while saving your time to focus on what matters. Check out our launch video.
Daily also has a progressive web app (PWA) for mobile devices so that you can sync your data across the devices. Apart from that, it also has some great features like the personalization of feed, search, layout customization, bookmarks, and even recently open tabs.
During its first two years period, Daily managed to achieve a lot. It got featured at Chrome Store, SitePoint, Softpedia, Better Programming, Prototypr, Reddit, and Product Hunt. Earlier this year, it went completely open-source. Since then, there have been 27 releases in total — pretty quick on iterating and improving. 🤞
Currently, Daily is helping over 35,000 developers to stay in touch with the latest tech news. The articles are served from handpicked 180+ unique sources. All the articles are categorized & appropriately tagged and can be further personalized. On average, Daily now gets over 6M page views monthly. 🥂
Daily was started as a side project by Ido Shamun — a seasoned developer and DevOps ninja, Tsahi Matsliah — UI/UX export, and Nimrod Kramer — CEO at The Elegant Monkeys. From there, it picked up! Now, it is managed by a small but active team of folks dedicated to making your experience at Daily better.
Let’s go back two years — roughly at this time of the year — our co-makers had a discussion on staying in touch with all the latest news from the community. It’s the time when we used to maintain an RSS feed, visit favorite blogs daily, saving links for later use, and whatnot. It was time-consuming and quite hard to catch up! 😣
Ido, being a developer, happened to found his way through some RSS feed and Slack channel hack, while Tsahi, being a designer, found it hard to get his head around it. Tsahi wanted it to be clean and organized intuitively. That’s where it all started!
We looked up for a possible solution to address the problem, but couldn’t find one. Instead, we ended up building one — Daily. The fun part is, the first version of Daily was designed by Ido and Nimrod to surprise Tsahi. And he loved it! 💯
We decided to share it with the other developers. So, we started quick, with a little dirty codebase, and a minimal user interface. Prepared some designs, planned user experience, and began to prepare for the very first launch.
All excited, we worked our best to prepare a presentable product and launch it on the Chrome Store. Roughly two years back, in October 2017, the first version of Daily was launched. That was the first time Daily was introduced to the world!
Do you know; it took only two weeks to build the initial version of Daily — quick & dirty!
Below is a screenshot from the very first version of the Daily. You can take a look at how it began and where it stands today.
Within two weeks of the launch of Daily, it blew up! We noticed a spike in the traffic, and it was already rocking on every analytics metrics. It came as a complete surprise!
We got over 50,000 pageviews and 600+ users, without spending a dime on marketing. Soon, it was popular worldwide, and hundreds of developers started using it — mindblown! 🤯
When we traced back, we were getting a good amount of traffic from ProductHunt. Arnaud Manaranche found us on Chrome Store and listed us on ProductHunt — that’s very kind of him! The product page for Daily 1.0 is still live on ProductHunt — in case if you want to take a look.
We received incredible feedback from our users on the Chrome Store, ProductHunt, and GitHub. We carefully considered the feedback and tried our best to deliver. A year down the road, we found Daily to be growing and decided to plan for the future.
As mentioned earlier, we had started quickly to get the product out to the world and evaluate the idea. At this time, we knew where we were headed. So, before adding further features, we decided to redo Daily from scratch with a solid infrastructure. 🤞
That’s how the journey towards Daily 2.0 started. It took more than six months of designing, planning, and coding to get it done. We launched Daily 2.0 in April 2019 with significant user experience, design, and security improvements. We published it on ProducHunt and became #3 Product of the Day. 💯
Daily 2.0 is the current version of Daily that you use and love! It’s constantly updated with minor fixes and new future updates. It’s listed at following places:
Feel free to reach out to us on any platform and give your feedback! It matters to us. ♥️
Over the period of two years, we have introduced some excellent features in the Daily. We identified some critical points through user feedback and incorporated in Daily to make it better. Below a quick list of features that Daily offer:
- 🔖 Bookmarks: Ability to bookmark the article on your account, which can be accessed anywhere — Chrome, Firefox, Mobile.
- 🍭 Feed Personalization: Daily curates articles from 180+ sources. You have the ability to personalize your feed based on hashtags and news sources. You can also read articles from a specific source only.
- 🎨 Layout Customization: You can completely customize the look of Daily as you like. You can choose between light & dark mode, list & card layout, and different spacing options. Also, you can enable/disable animations and show the recently visited items as well.
- 💤 Do Not Disturb (DND) Mode: If you want to put Daily on snooze and take a break, you can always turn on DND mode for an hour, day, or forever (until you turn on manually).
- 📣 Notification: There’s a small notification bar called terminal on the top right corner, that’s where we send you notifications regarding all updates.
- ❌ Hide/Report Article: We make our best efforts to improve and filter content for you. Still, if you find any inappropriate/ broken link, you can report. Also, you can hide any particle article.
- 🔍 Daily Search: We recently launched v2.10.0 of Daily in which we introduced search and sorting. Using sort, you can sort content by popularity or time. While using the search, find articles in Daily's database at a blazing fast speed.
We plan to write in detail about how you can make most out of these features. But that’s for another post, sometime soon!
Initially, we created a public repository on GitHub to get feedback from our users. They could create an issue for any problem they were facing or if they needed a new feature. It proved to be effective, and we were able to connect to our users.
During this time, we also had some folks reaching us out and offering their help to develop a feature or fix a bug. We thought Daily is all about community and what could be better than they contributing to the product they use. This way, the community could feel more connected.
🎉 So, we decided to go open source. Our users got a platform to give feedback, learn how Daily was built, see how it works, take care of it, or maybe contribute. And we can tell you from our experience; open-sourcing was one of the best decisions we could ever make.
It helped us document Daily, improve the codebase, and become more transparent. Now, most of our development is maintained through our GitHub issues. You can easily track most of the ongoing changes on Daily there.
You can also check out our GitHub repo and see all the projects that we have open-sourced. We are open to all kinds of contributions in any form. Feel free to reach us out and share your thoughts.
Along with our codebase, we also open-sourced our design guidelines. We created a Storybook for Daily’ design and published it publicly for you. So, if you want to learn about Daily’s design system or get some inspiration, feel free to check it out.
We love Daily, so does our users. Don’t just take our words for it; see what they have to say about Daily.
“As a developer, I cannot imagine a better new tab extension than Daily.” — Ahmad Awais, Google Developers Expert ❯ Node.js Community Committee Member ❯ Edutainer at VSCode.pro
“I use Daily daily. It's a must-have for any developer that wants to stay in the know without being nerd-sniped. Ido and the Daily team have done an incredible job with this extension.” — Eric Berry, Founder of CodeFund
“The best curator of coding news, so be sure to check them out.” — Trey Huffine, gitconnected
We have some interesting ideas in our bucket list for Daily. We working at our best to bring those ideas into life and share them with you. 🤞