We're looking at changing the front page of Stack Apps to look more like a proper "marketplace" and less like a run of the mill Stack Exchange site.

Proposal (third draft)

new app tab tile

This would replace old look of Stack Apps

The theory is that votes, answers, and views are completely useless. A picture is really needed, and most tags are noise. We've also added the first bit of the About section (which every app should have, if they follow the template).

We will be providing a small markdown extension to specify the thumbnail, and properly documenting how to get a desired tag to show up as your "+1 tag." Libraries will get a default thumbnail, but will be able to override it just like apps.

Anything we should be showing and aren't?

A "tile" will have at most 2 tags, or , and a single additional tag. A version string will be displayed next to the author, if supplied.

We will also be tweaking the front page algorithm, which is currently just ordered by votes, to allow new and updated apps to get some more time on the front page. Very highly voted apps will still generally appear, but will not always get top billing.

Thumbnail syntax has been decided <!-- thumbnail: a-png-file -->, and How to list your application/library/wrapper/script here has been updated accordingly.

The <!-- tag: --> and <!-- version: --> extensions have also been added, details can also be found here.

  • What do you propose a pic for the library should be?
    – jjnguy
    Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 20:35
  • @Justin - A logo, presumably. The default image will be something gear-y. Commented Feb 8, 2011 at 20:39
  • +1 - Thanks for finally tackling this (and especially announcing/discussing it upfront) - long overdue ;) Commented Feb 9, 2011 at 17:41
  • +1 - I've been hoping for something like this for a while. Feel free to draw inspiration from StackList. Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 3:01
  • 2nd draft: the next most popular tag seems to contradict the self managed "+1 tag" approach above? Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 8:55
  • @Steffen - still playing around with that, the rule may end up being "the next most popular tag is your +1 tag". We just need to be explicit about it, whatever it is. Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 17:02
  • @Kevin - hmmh, I see and (hopefully) understand where you are heading to, but am not sure whether a most popular approach is appropriate, case in point: I'm writing a library with a focus on use case XYZ (e.g. XMPP integration), which happens to be implemented in .NET; given this algorithm I'd either need to remove the .NET tag or can't promote the tag featuring my selling point. Of course, the latter will be stressed in the title, and admittedly none of the current listings seem to be affected, but I'd expect that to change once apps/libraries mature marketing wise; well, just my 0.02$ ... Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 22:32
  • 1
    @Kevin - btw., kudos for the planned front page algorithm, stuff like that is invaluable to keep developers engaged and motivated and drive the app platform as a whole! Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 22:35

3 Answers 3


Anything we should be showing and aren't?

Attribution (i.e. keep the author name/link)

My vote would be to drop the noisy reputation and last update time indeed, but keep the author name/link in the bottom right corner still, albeit with substantially reduced color/contrast (e.g. the last update color currently in use would probably do just fine):

  • While I see your point of this carrying little to none immediately relevant information from a user perspective (as well as the click through for details), it is still common practice nowadays; more important though, it would properly respect and showcase the highly valued spirit of fair attribution.

  • The targeted space would be entirely empty otherwise anyway, thus having a non distracting visual element there might even balance the tile composition in a subtle way.


Thanks for this, I like it.
The proposal's style is as clean and polished as other state of the art marketplaces; here are some screenshots:


enter image description here

enter image description here

enter image description here

enter image description here

On your proposal I would add:

Authors: I like what Mozilla does, Author should be displayed.
Votes: we don't have number of downloads or shiny stars. Votes number is our rating system and it's an useful data for a potential user.

What else?

It would be cool to have the possibility to browse the apps per categories and to order them by filters like Popular|Recently added|Recently updated.
I'm aware that you don't want to customize it too much to avoid to fork the SE codebase; anyway those are my suggestions.


What are the dimensions of the image? And will they automatically be thumbnailed?

Either way, I'd suggest explicitly setting the image dimensions (at least the width) so that if the images it too big, it will shrink. This is especially important if images don't load for some reason.

  • 1
    stackapps.com/questions/7/… lists the dimensions, 144x119 pixels. If the image doesn't match that, it'll be scaled horizontal and clipped vertically. Commented Feb 10, 2011 at 22:23
  • @Kevin: Will the thumbnail images be hosted on your servers or will they be served from the URL we provide? Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 17:15
  • @George - they are served via the provided url. I'd suggest using the image upload tool in the post editor to get an imgur url to use. Commented Feb 11, 2011 at 17:57

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