Yahoo! Pipes is one of the coolest apps on the web for messing around with data. You can use it to splice together feeds, filter them, pull photos from Flickr and do a whole lot more. Some usability improvements would be nice but a little bit of experimentation goes a long way.
Three types of badges are now available and at least one is easy to use. That's the list badge, demonstrated below in displaying the best of the weird hunting blogs, a Pipe we wrote about creating in this post, "How to Find the Weirdest Stuff on the Internet."
The second badge type is the geotagged photos badge. I'll be damned if I can filter Flickr by geotag in Pipes, no matter what I put in the the location field it doesn't work for me. Maybe you're smarter than me though and will appreciate this feature.
The final badge type is the slideshow badge, again displaying Flickr images.
What's wrong with these badges?
For the more code savvy, MagpieRSS on your own server is the way to go. The idea behind these tools, though, is that they let progressively less technical people do progressively more powerful things. It's in that way that the Pipes team dropped the ball with these badges.
I would love for Yahoo to provide real customization and search engine visible PHP output. That's my ambivalent but interested take on this announcement, let's look at the happy faces of Yahoo! folks showing us how it works.