Feedly, The Best Feedreader

With the demise of Google Reader, people, including myself, scrambled for new feedreaders. First, a quick explanation of what a feedreader does, for those unaware.

A good chunk of websites have what is called RSS, Really Simply Syndication/Rich Site Summery. There are various types of RSS feeds, RSS, RSS2, Atom, and others. They can syndicated content and even comments. I have multiple types embedded in the Header code. It is a quick way to have all your sites in one place allowing quick reading of content, seeing what’s new, etc, without going from website to website. It’s actually been around a long time, going back to Netscape (which seems like 8 Track tape music nowadays).

Anyhow, I’ve tried many, many readers in an attempt to replace Google Reader. The closest is The Old Reader. However, they’ve been trying to get people to upgrade to a paid platform. Hey, that’s their right. But, I get annoyed be the message “You are currently using 187 of the 100 subscriptions available for your plan. You should consider an upgrade to premium“. And it can be a bit slow in updating. One nice feature is the ability to copy headlines within TOR, which makes writing the Sorta Blogless Sunday Pinup posts easier and quicker (they typically take 1 1/2 to write, even with all the pre-formatting.)

I’ve also previously used, and went back to using, Bloglines. This works well, though sometimes can be slow, and can be a bit behind in updating.

One annoying issue with those two, and so many others I tried, was that when you added a link it didn’t automatically alphabetize. You had to slowly drag it to the right place. Yeah, minor, but annoying.

Then there’s Feedly. Feedly has a very nice layout, it is very customizable, and, better yet, there is an Android app. I would assume there is an Apple app, as well. The problem originally was that the lists were formatted by newest, not alphabetically. And there was no way to change to alphabetical. However, Feedly has recently gone to alphabetizing the links, and when you add one it automatically is put in the right place. Yes, there is a way to see the newest articles: you simply click on the top level which provides all the articles, rather than clicking on an individual site.

I’ve used Feedly for my last 3 Sunday pinup posts, and it increased the speed of creation. The only thing I cannot grab are the headlines, but, doesn’t slow me down much. The site is fast, and the way I have it formatted gives me the info I needs quickly. This helps a lot when it comes to sites that make heavy use of videos. With Bloglines, TOR, and others, this can really, really, really slow loading down. For instance, Nice Deb and American Power: both would typically take several minutes to load in most feedreaders, yet took about a second in Feedly, because it doesn’t initially load all the videos. Until you click on the individual post, you simply see a brief excerpt.

Back to the Android app, this is a huge benefit for mobile users. Rather than constantly loading web pages again and again, I can see what is going on quickly at sites I have saved. If I want to read the whole thing, I can. I can even comment. I can open in a full web browser if I like. This also saves lots of bandwidth. And time.

So, if you use a feedreader, or are interested in using one, check out Feedly. There are an enormous amount of ways to customize and use it, and it is fast.

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3 Responses to “Feedly, The Best Feedreader”

  1. Kevin says:

    I’m just a casual reader, and for that reason, I like the “RSS Ticker” addon to Firefox. It puts a scrolling ticker at the bottom of the window with all of the recent posts of your favorite websites. Then, optionally, it can open every one of them up in a separate tab with a single click.

    I like that because it’s close to the feel of reading a newspaper. You get some articles you are not interested in, but you can easily close the tab and move on to the next. Plus it gives your favorite websites more hits because you always open up every post at least once.

    I don’t know if it’d be much use to you though, Teach, since it only updates once every 15 minutes. Sadly, that’s considered ‘old news’ these days :). Plus you will very often have a hundred or two tabs open if you do it my way. That probably wouldn’t work well with an old computer.

  2. Don says:

    I use newsblur (newsblur.com) – I miss Google Reader. Newsblur seems to work well.

  3. I’ve checked that out myself, Kevin, but, yeah, in terms of the amount I use it, something like Feedly works best for me.

    I’ve tried that one, Don. Works well.

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