Strict ordering by publication date makes it tricky to organize a narrative. The “previous” and “next” links at the bottom of a collected notebook could be better if the flow were related to the high-level structure of the collection.
For example, the @observablehq/introduction collection should probably be re-ordered so that it starts with 1-2 introductory notebooks, then goes to the ‘user manual’ overview notebook, then goes through more detailed or specialized topics afterward. With a chronological order, as additional notebooks keep getting added to this collection, the important introductory material keeps getting pushed further and further down the list.
Edit: as a follow-up, the way I think of the “collection” feature (or perhaps just the feature I want to have) is “here is a curated collection of notebooks following X theme, and telling a specific high-level story”, whereas the reverse-chronological list is more aligned with the intuition of “here’s a minimally curated topic tag”.