Sunday, April 02, 2006

Feed Readers, revisted

One of the earliest posts from this blog, which I still link to on my sidebar, was How do I read your blog?. I still keep a link to that on my sidebar. Ten months later, it's time to update my advice. Or is it?

Yesterday I ran into this review: TechCrunch » The State of Online Feed Readers

If you are looking purely for performance, Google Reader and FeedLounge are the fastest in our tests. Bloglines and Rojo are the best choice if you are looking for a feature rich application (and Rojo blows Bloglines away on "web 2.0" type features).

None, however, yet approach the speed and agility of the best desktop based readers like NetNewsWire and FeedDemon.
Which is more or less what I was saying a year ago. Rojo was brand new then, but clearly had some interesting features. Since that time I still visit it occassionally. It gives me a nice way to sample the latest posts on my favorite blogs. But I don't like using it to review all my feeds and catch up. Bloglines, esepcially since I keep my feeds in categorized folders, is much better for that.

I also have played with the feed features in gmail, in the google deskbar, and on the Firefox bookmarks toolbar. These tools may work if you don't have a lot of feeds to track. I've set a few readers of this blog up with a Firefox toolbar feed, so I know it works for some people. But they are just not good enough for the volume of feeds that I like to monitor.

As for the desktop readers, I said then that I don't know about 'em because I don't use 'em — and it's still true. Web based feed readers have the advantage of being available anywhere you go. And I regularly check my feeds from at least three different workstations. So the desktop readers may be fast and wonderful. But they are not for me.

Bottom line: go to and sign up. Take a look at my public feeds. You might find a few you want to subscribe to yourself. Jump in, the water's fine.

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