There are many threads which, while I don't want to receive an email when there's a new post, I still would like to be able to quickly see whether there is something new in. I also find the current subscription model for other objects to be poor for tracking many of them, since I have to look immediately or I will never receive another notification of that item, leading me to forget about it.
To improve this situation, I propose a different kind of subscription: Watch. When you choose to watch an object (thread, game, geeklist, image, etc.), it's added to your watch list. Then, when you view a particular page (/watch or something like that), it will show you content which you haven't viewed which is part of those objects. Thus, if there's a new post in a thread you're Watching, that thread will show up on that page. If there's a new strategy article for a game you're Watching, a link to the article will show up.
The Watch page would be a list, sorted by when the item was last updated. That way, if you think "what was that game with that photo three days ago? It was on my watch page.." you can easily find it. This is in preference to hiding items once they're read because it puts less load on the database by not having to check whether you've read each item since the update every time the page is displayed.
Would you use this?
If you used this, would you watch many more objects than you currently subscribe to, or would you use only this?
Could you see yourself using both this feature *and* subscribe?
What sort of features would you like to see on such a page?
Should who is watching an object be public information? Optionally per-user?
(The Artist formerly known as) Arnest R
Keep calm and carry on...
It would make a great front-page module !