RSS Marches On…Net-based Aggregators

I keep meaning to do this…I've noticed a bunch of net-based aggregators out there, I'd be curious if anyone uses them. One of the earliest is Bloglines, founded by the same fellow behind eGroups. There's also a new one over at Feedster call myFeedster. And there's FastBuzz. And of course…

I keep meaning to do this…I’ve noticed a bunch of net-based aggregators out there, I’d be curious if anyone uses them. One of the earliest is Bloglines, founded by the same fellow behind eGroups. There’s also a new one over at Feedster call myFeedster. And there’s FastBuzz. And of course the one Meg’s working on, Kinja (still in stealth).

Author: John Battelle

A founder of NewCo (current CEO), sovrn (Chair), Federated Media, Web 2 Summit, The Industry Standard, Wired. Author, investor, board member (Acxiom, Sovrn, NewCo), bike rider, yoga practitioner.

13 thoughts on “RSS Marches On…Net-based Aggregators”

  1. I read this post in bloglines. I love it. I signed up for myFeedster but I lie the bloglines interface better. Though feedster has better searching capabilites (of course). I’m finding ways to use both until someone comes up with something better.

  2. Before I used Bloglones, I started out with NewsMonster. Although it was a compiled app that ran in my browser, it was incredibly slow and buggy. I tried out many different aggregators after that, but none of them had the features that I needed, except Bloglines. I’ve been a very happy user of Bloglines. My only worry is that someday it might not be online.

  3. Bloglines is my personal favorite among myFeedster, Radio, NewsGator, NewsReader and FeedDemon and not just because it is web-based. But there are new products coming out soon that will make this race much more interesting. Anyone remember the headline, “Browser Wars”?

    There should be an interesting webinar on this topic called RSS Winterfest with some great speakers, including:

    Dave Winer
    Anil Dash
    Jon Udell
    Bill French
    Robert Scoble
    Scott Johnson
    Greg Reinacker
    Chris Pirillo

    Here’s the press release about it.

  4. I think the RSS-clients work much better then the web-based solutions, clients like FeedReader and RSSReader are much, much faster.

    Of course, it would be great if someone built a service that had worked as a client or on the web depending on your preference at the time (i.e. you’re on the road at a public terminal or on someone else’s desktop).

    More at http://rss.weblogsinc.com

  5. I use Bloglines and like it so far.
    I wish there was a simple button that would
    maximize the right panel while I am reading,
    then resize it when I am ready to scan through
    my list of RSS feeds.

    I also have not discovered how to easily
    add new feeds that are not in the
    Bloglines directory. that part needs to become
    dead nuts simple.

  6. Bloglines does have an easy way to subscribe to new feeds not in the directory. It’s a bookmarklet, which is a piece of code that sits in your toolbar, along with other sites that you’ve bookmarked. When you’re visiting a site that has a feed that you’d like to subscribe to, you simply click the bookmarklet, and you’re subscribed. More information can be found here:

    http://www.bloglines.com/help/easysub

    I know we need to make this easier to understand and more apparent to users. I hope this helps.

  7. Full comment at http://www.chanezon.com/pat/weblog/archives/000118.html

    RSS readers are a fascinating area, and I think the right mix between client and server processing has not been found yet.
    There’s clearly some room for innovation left in this area.

    I started with Radio, which has an integrated RSS reader as a local daemon, with the UI in the browser. I also tried AmphetaDesk, which is based on the same idea.

    Then I’ve tried NewsMonster, a pure client side solution, with some projects to define a reputation system and collaborative filtering on the server side later. I found the ideas interesting, but the execution pretty poor.

    I’ve tested blogstreet who have an interesting idea for offline use: they ley you get your subscription via IMAP. If your IMAP client caches the mails, you have an offline RSS browser, while still being able to use the web UI if you’re online.
    It’s the same idea on the server as Abe Fettig’s Hep on the client.

    Bloglines is pretty good for just the web stuff, but it lacks a solution for offline use, such as IMAP access in blogstreet.

    Today I use NetNewsWire, a pure client side solution that works only on a mac.

  8. Jason: The currently Mac OS X-based aggregator Shrook has an interesting architecture that allows you to view your feeds through a web interface as well as the desktop application. Basically, your subscriptions are proxied through the web service, which reduces load on popular sites. You can also tell the reader to fetch from the site directly, if it’s something that’s frequently updated, on an intranet, etc. I’ve heard rumors about clients for other operating systems.

    As far as the general case goes, I’m currently using .Net-based app called SharpReader.

    There basically aren’t any decent aggregators for Linux. Straw is okay, but there are no cateogories or folders, and having a flat list of a hundred feeds becomes annoying.

    It seems like all of the open source unix energy is now sunk into these massive projects, and the developers of tiny, innovative client software have all Switched.

    I think NewsMonster gets kind of a bad rap – it’s very ambitious, and has a lot of potential. I’m not sure wrapping mozilla around a bunch of java was the best decision from a performance standpoint, but it is very multiplatform.

  9. For a web-based reader I use The Daily Read. It has nearly six hunbred feeds in 25 categories. It is easy to navigate and you don’t need to sign-in or create an account to use to preview the feeds. Also, there are over 30 comics to read.

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