Dandelife is one of the sites which emerged from the growing trend to record the events of one's life in a family-friendly way. This site allows to keep an online diary, but unlike a blog, Dandelife promises an interactive and media rich experience instead of a list of uploaded texts.
The creators of Dandelion coined a new word to express what the site is about. It's 'lifecasting' and means 'creating an record of one's life experience'. It's different from blogging in the respect of creating the timeline. While blogging, we can add descriptions of past events, memories, and photos from travels in no particular order, and create a rather mixed record.
Dandelife allows to arrange the stories, put them in a time order, add photos of the places in which the story took place, etc. In this way, the user can create a comprehensive story of one's life, which will be easy to follow, and add more details or stories, without getting confused in the order.
As soon as the new user finishes a rather slow register and log-in process, he or she can start with creating the lifecast by adding stories, photos, video files, and whatever they find suitable. In the result, a comprehensive and interesting life record can be created.The site is integrated with Flickr and YouTube, but not other photo hosting websites.
Well, the content and quality of the lifecast is entirely up to the users, who can either post great stories and decorate them with media, or write boring stories without any decorations.
To be honest, i from the description I expected something a bit more interactive and adventurous, but it turned out that most of the stories are simply blog-like posts, with a couple of pictures in the bottom. I think that some editing options would be very useful, to allow the users to really express themselves, add pictures in appropriate places to enhance the readers experience.
Another thing was the timeline - we are getting used to really great ways of showing event timelines, with pictures, links, and other surprises, while here, it's either a simple list, or a slow working graphic representation with just the titles of the stories. Another thing, which can slow down, or even prevent the users from enjoying the site, is the fact, that sometimes it's simply impossible to log in.
The site looks ok, but in my opinion, there are too many pieces of text, and lenghty text links to make using it truly enjoyable. It might seem all right for people who are used to the text-blog format, but users who prefer a more modern approach will probably miss animations, real time scrolling, and some design spark. Overall, its neat, but boring.
Dandelife has quite a lot of potential, but i think it could use some improvements in the area of customisation of users profiles, and delivering their content in a more interesting, and innovative way. I think that nowadays, it's not enough to give people a place where they can upload their texts - they should also receive attractive tools to present the content in the way they think is attractive.