Monday, May 6, 2013

Quest for a new feed reader

As you probably are already aware Google Reader is going away as of July 1st. This sucks. Google Reader makes it so easy to manage all the blogs I follow, keep things organized, and I can access it wherever. But they're buttheads so I'm going to have to come up with a new solution. The two that have come up the most are Bloglovin' and Feedly. So I signed up for both of them to try them out because why not. They both let me import my current blogs into their systems. It's only been a couple days, but let's see how, so far, things look

The Good:
  • Easy to import my blogs into the system
  • It's browser based, which means I don't need to download anything to use it
The Bad:
  • The items don't get marked as read until I actually click on a button to mark it as read.
  • Animated GIFs are not animated unless I go to the actual post
  • Can't resort items so the oldest posts appear first
  • If I read a blog in a different reader, which I often do since I use Newsify App, it doesn't register those posts as having been read
  • The browser tab doesn't tell me when unread posts are pulled in. This is a minor thing, but I usually have a tab with GR open along with a zillion others and I like to be able to just glance at it to see if anything new has come in.
The Good:
  • Easy to import my blogs into the system
  • Animated GIFs are animated within it
  • Scrolling past items marks them as read
  • Easy to re-sort posts
The Bad:
  • The browser tab doesn't tell me when unread posts are pulled in.
  • If there is a post made up of images, they're formatted right to left. Which is neat and all but since I don't read that way, it's very annoying
  • You have to download a browser extension. I regularly use 3 different computers, which means I need to download on all of them (and 4 dif browsers in total). This is annoying and means that if I'm away from any of these computers I can't use Feedly
So there you have it, at least so far. If I'm wrong on any of these points, let me know. The fact that I can't get Feedly just wherever really annoys me, even if it doesn't pose a problem that often. I also thought I would have no problem setting up the extra security on my Google accounts until that bit me in the ass.

I'm not too worried about the mobile app for either of this systems, if only because I currently use Newsify and like that better than the Reader mobile app.

I also read a couple things about Google buying Wavii and that possibly being a GR replacement, except it looks like the focus isn't going to be something I care too much about. I'm generally distrustful of natural language processing stuff ever since a vendor told me their system was better at determining sentiment than real humans, at which point I laughed, mumbled something about a robot uprising, and then added sarcastic notes to my presentation. Cos I'm a mature adult. ANYWAY, Wavii's focus seems to be automated curation which is nifty and all but not really what I'm looking for.

So for now I'm continuing to rely on Google Reader while I sporadically play with Bloglovin' and Feedly, end up disappointed in both and just whine WHY MUST GOOGLE DESTROY THE THINGS I LOVE? (See "mature adult" comment above.) Do I like Google Reader so much because it's what I'm used to? Yes, most definitely. Does that mean I'll accept its demise with quiet dignity and just learn to use a different reader? Not a chance.