Online Feed Reader testing

February 21, 2007 § 1 Comment

De Facto Feed IconI don’t know what you feel about mobility but when it comes to computers mobility is essential. Even if one has a laptop or pda or any other device that gets you online in notime my belief is that many things that we usually do on our computers will go online. Broadband will help this become a reality. Personally I strongly believe in “the online personal storage space” or “the online harddrive” where you can keep files and pictures that you don’t consider critically secret or personal because it could happen that the site goes off sometimes or could be hijacked but these things are less and less frequent especially with big boys playing in this area.

We already have an online email adress for sure, an e-mail photo-album, an e-mail bookmarks place and perhaps more.

I didn’t use any feed reader until I started this website and though I was browsing regularly 15-20 websites I never felt the need that I can’t go on like this any more like I do now. The Internet has become a place where you waste a lot of time for your searches and visiting websites but especially trying to find what you really look for is particularly difficult despite search engines’ efforts to become better and better and offer quality results. That’s why bookmarks appeared in the first place, getting you able to bookmark webpages that you accidentally find and that are worth reading again. Then the development of web 2.0 through XML has offered the chance of enhancing the web experience so now you can get all the stuff you’re interested of in short descriptions. So you can pick up only the titles that you find interesting.

Although I prefer to have both an online and offline way of doing this, at least for now I am going to try one of the best online subscription based feed readers and as it was choosed in a Feed Readers Rewiew article by PcWorld’s online magazine, among other non-free solutions, I will give a chance to Bloglines.

Bloglines can help you stay in touch with preffered news if you travel a lot or usually work on more than one computer. If you use the service at the office and read a few titles, you can log in later at home and pick up where you left off, so no need to chase the feeds you already read. Bloglines can export your subscription list in a format that other aggregators can import, in case you decide that you’d prefer a plug-in or stand-alone app. I only wish that there was a way of syncing my offline feed reader with bloglines at startup or when I start the application. Perhaps this is already possible but I don’t have any knowledge about this.

The Bloglines layout resembles the layout of desktop applications: a twin pane arrangement with your subscription list on the left and headlines on the right followed by a summary of each. Titles have alternatingly coloured backgrounds in white and light blue in the right frame. Each feed display can be set to show just titles or summaries, or complete entries (on feeds that support the feature). Bloglines also lets you view feeds from the previous hour, day, week, month, or longer lapse of time. The service currently checks feeds for updates once per hour.

I don’t know if the Yahoo mail delivers so bad mails or the Bloglines service is so busy but as I am still waiting for the registration activation link to pop into my mailbox so here it is a screenshot:

Bloglines printscreen showing the 2-pane layout

I will take a close look to this web service and try to make the most out of it. Perhaps a deeper review is next.

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