Beyond Bloglines

For three or four years now, I've used Bloglines. As of right now, I'm getting 434 feeds, which seems like a case of healthy curiosity turning into a vice. There have been periods when I've just ignored it entirely for weeks at a stretch. The experience of "clearing the lines" -- going through postings at high speed to wipe out the backlog -- carries skimming to new intensities of indifference. But I can't take seriously the idea that that sort of thing is antithetical to serious reading. It's been a way, however flawed, to keep up with conversations and citations, and has led me to any number of books or PDFs that I might not have heard of otherwise.

All in all, then, Bloglines has served its purpose reasonably well, and it's a nuisance that it shuts down on November 1st. (Originally this was to have happened October 1st.) It is possible to store and (presumably) transfer my list of feeds, or so I am told, and I should do this soon.

But I haven't looked into another reader yet. Any thoughts -- positive or negative -- about Google Reader or other aggregators? 
October 21, 2010 2:36 PM | | Comments (6)



After looking around desperately for a good non-google solution for a text-oriented reader, and failing to find one that's cross-platform and cloud-based (as bloglines was) I switched to Google Reader. It's a lot like bloglines 2.0, in feel, very easy to adapt to. My main problem with it is that I'm using the iPad for a lot of casual browsing these days, and GR doesn't play nice with the iPad Safari. (neither does twitter, by the way, though the mobile version is better) So I got a free GR shell app (Feedler, which I'd give about a 7 out of 10, but most of the other ones I looked at were worse. I might invest in the pro version soon) which I've adapted to quite quickly (the general problem of not being able to switch painlessly between apps aside).

Google Reader seems to have fixed the issue that used to bug me (when new posts would show up when you were getting close to the end of your last batch, you wouldn't be able to read the new ones). It's pretty good.

Jonathan, did you try Reeder? I like it pretty well, and it links reasonably to Safari.

Scott, I'm a Google reader fan as well, but I made that choice a few years ago, so it's hard to say what else might be out there. I'm also sufficiently far behind in the gadget acquisition curve that I don't have Jonathan's issues.

I wrestle with the same problem of "too much", and recently went on a bit of a purge, which has helped.

Thanks to everyone who has responded. Elsewhere (on Facebook and Twitter) people have been pointing me to Netnewswire as well as Google Reader. I'm leaning toward the latter -- unless anyone has a major criticism of it to lodge.

Apart from the point that Google is like something Philip K. Dick might have come up with during a bad trip, which I take as obvious.

I should acknowledge, then, that I work for that same Dickish transcontinental entity. But I would have said the same about Reader even before signing up.

(Trembles in abject submission before digital overlord.)

Leave a comment

Recent Work

Fidel Castro: My Life 
A review from Newsday
40 Years of "The Crisis of the Negro Intellectual" 
Marking the anniversary of Harold Cruse's great book
Style and Grace 
A review of a book by the late, great Grace Paley from ... sheesh, almost ten years ago.
Oh, Canada 
National identity -- going south?
The LaRouche Tabernacle Choir 
An interview with me about the LaRouche movement, on Pacifica radio in Los Angeles
Open Library 
An interview with Aaron Swartz, one of the developers....
Sailing From Ithaka 
The new report calling for a digital platform for scholarly publishing deserves a wide audience


Battle of the Titans 
Dinesh D'Souza and Alan Wolfe debating? Imagine a slime mold in conflict with a patch of mildew. It's just that inspiring.
To the Tehran Station 
Not about Edmund Wilson
more picks


About this Entry

This page contains a single entry by Quick Study published on October 21, 2010 2:36 PM.

A Brief Constitutional was the previous entry in this blog.

Merchants of Culture is the next entry in this blog.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Creative Commons License
This weblog is licensed under a Creative Commons License.