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'Faster,' 'instant' Digg 2.0 unveiled at SXSW

Digg CEO Jay Adelson surprises the audience by announcing a revamped version of the service with a big slate of new features.

Digg CEO Jay Adelson used the opportunity of his companys big SXSW party to unveil what is essentially version 2.0 of the hit service. Digg

AUSTIN, Texas--Digg announced at its annual South by Southwest Interactive (SXSWi) party Saturday night that it will soon launch a significantly revamped version of its service that is faster and has instant Digging and instant submissions.

Just before Digg founder Kevin Rose and his Diggnation partner Alex Albrecht took the stage at Stubb's BBQ here, CEO Jay Adelson got in front of the audience of hundreds and took the opportunity to introduce, for the first time, what he said was "five years" of major work on the popular headline aggregation system.

Among the new features, Adelson said, are that any keyword can be its own category; that submissions will be a one-click process; that users will no longer have to log in to Digg something; that people's Digg home pages will be affected by their own interests; that the service is bringing back leader boards; and that it is ripping out its MySQL back end and moving to a infrastructure that will be "very, very fast."

Adelson said over the loud noise of the Digg party that because of the one-click submission process, the site will likely go from handling 20,000 submissions a day to millions a day. "If you have content, we're going to get it on there in a single click...Can you handle that much content?" he boasted.

Referring to what he called "curation," Adelson said: "The bottom line is, the people who curate this stuff are you guys. One size fits all just doesn't work anymore, and I need more signals to organize this content. So from now on, [for] Digg buttons, you no will longer have to log in to click that Digg button. There will be instant Digging. If you're on another Web site, you click that button, [and] there's no more waiting.

Adelson also talked about how users' Digg home pages will be "heavily personalized" based on the content they submit.

For now, this Digg 2.0 is not publicly available. But those in the audience were offered the first opportunity to get in on the early testing. Adelson didn't say when the new service would be rolled out to everyone.

Over at Mashable, Ben Parr noticed that in the Digg comment threads on the announcement, Digg's Steve French posted his thoughts on the announcement: "Top to bottom, the entire company has been in overdrive for this project. There are amazing things coming, and I'm glad the screen shots and [Adelson's] presentation didn't spill everything we have in the works for you guys.

"My favorite new's blazing fast. There has been a lot of effort that's gone into the architecture and monitoring of performance."