1) Agreed ! .
in other related matter : in fact i think the whole "popular articles" section is useless & complicated .
thats because some of them are outdated & other are un
i mean who would look for a 2 years old GeForce Ti4200's preview or Matrox Parhelia's review ???
if you can exchange it with a simple drop down list or just a link for an "articles page" by chronological order like ragejg suggested . it will be much more of a use & will save more space .
2)Hell ya !
3)Yep why not?! .. (if you remove or shrink the popular articles section there will be a good place for the staff opinions & news