If you've arrived here at Soldier Ant from the Yahoo! User Interface Blog, Welcome! This is (mostly), a blog about nothing. Kinda like Seinfeld, only... um... not funny.
Anyway, as Christian notes, today he pushed a pattern to the Open Pattern Library that I've had the pleasure of helping marshall: Vote to Promote. Unless you've been living under a rock, you've probably noticed that “voting for articles” (á la Digg, Reddit and others) is all the rage these days. Across the vast Yahoo! network, of course, there are more than a couple examples of this interaction style popping up here and there. Some of these implementations have been more successful than others (ahem... 0 votes?! Really?!) but interest remains high and we've got at least one V2P-style design coming down the pike that I'm really excited about, so watch this space.
The pattern, of course, just attempts to cut across some of the variables and variations and establish a good, common-sense approach to providing a voting-ranked content pool. To be honest, it probably favors the Digg approach (especially with the emphasis on voting things up, and keeping the 'bury' action as a secondary feature.) But why argue with success?
We've chosen to purposefully keep this pattern as a high-level one: not getting too deep into any specific design—either interaction or visual—but opting instead to describe the system in general terms, give some general recommendations, and… generally… leave the details to iron themselves out. You can see the opportunities here for some followup, deeper-dive patterns that explain exactly how elements of the interface should work: the voting mechanism itself; perhaps details on the popularity algorithm and some of its less-than-obvious inputs; burying or vetoing submissions; etc. etc. Like I said—watch this space.
Christian and I joked about the inevitability of someone submitting the pattern to Digg (hopefully with some totally inflammatory and accusational title like YAHOO! TAKES CREDIT for DIGG's SUCCESS!!!) Of course, it would be wrong for me to pimp our own pattern, right? But I'd certainly Digg it if someone else did so... heh.