Last night, while I was watching Countdown, I saw a brief ad for some new web content on the MSNBC website. It flashed by so quickly that all I caught were the colors. But after doing a bit of digging, I found what they were pushing.

A couple of things caught my eye. First are the Snood and Breakout games that they’ve included. Nothing new, until you see the news headlines flash across the screen. It’s an interesting way to pass the time without wasting it – at least you’re keeping up with the latest headlines.

A game similar to Snood,  with headlines that drop down as you play

More interesting is their new Spectra Visual Newsreader, covered yesterday at UX Magazine. Essentially, you pick your favorite news stories and they swirl about you, waiting for you to flick through them.

A cloud of news stories in the Spectra Visual Newsreader.

My only complaint is that, despite the fluid collection of news stories, you’re forced to flip through them one at a time, in order. I kept clicking on random stories trying to grab something different out of the cloud.

But really, I think MSNBC should work on fully immersive environments. How cool would it be to have news stories swarming around you!

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